“The virus is spreading at a pace we haven’t seen since the start of this pandemic and the next several days and weeks will be critical to stop the surge. We are sounding the alarm,” said Newsom. “It is crucial that we act to decrease transmission and slow hospitalizations before the death count surges. We’ve done it before and we must do it again.”
However, it has been revealed that Tesla employees are considered essential and can ignore this order, according to CNBC. The new instructions came from the California Department of Public Health.
"The Limited Stay at Home Order does not apply to these employees as they are deemed essential workers - manufacturing is listed as an essential workforce. You can find more here,” the department wrote to CNBC inquiry, including a link to a list of essential workers by sector.
“The Critical Manufacturing Sector identifies several industries to serve as the core of the sector including Transportation Equipment Manufacturing Products. While operating, this sector must follow industry guidance for manufacturing.”
The essential workers list included employees from the health sector, emergency services, food and agriculture, energy, water and wastewater, transportation and logistics, communications, government operations, critical manufacturing, financial services, chemical materials, defense, and industrial. The stay-at-home order is set to remain in effect until December 21.
It should be noted that officials didn't always hold the same opinion about Tesla workers. Last March, Alameda county officials declared that producing Teslas was not an essential service and shut down the Fremont, California factory.
Musk responded by briefly closing down the factory and then simply reopening it in direct violation of the county's instructions. He then threatened to sue them. It seems the county does not want a repeat of the drama even with the coronavirus running rampant!