Stop the Track!

The worst sin that could be committed in the assembly hall was to stop the track.
At the time I was working on the top floor of the Assembly Hall where the trimmed bodies were stored before going to the track on the floor below. It was always noisy up there due to the roller beds and the chain conveyors click clacking away.

But this day, in the middle of the shift, the whole noise stopped abruptly. Looking down from the body drops one could see that all three tracks had also stopped. The silence was deafening!

Within minutes some of the guys from the control room, in the basement, were swarming around the bodies, lifting bonnets and checking papers. Something drastic had happened.

It appeared that some bodies had reached a point on the track and the wrong parts had reached the same point! All three tracks had the same problem. How had this happened?

When a car was ordered it would be given a vehicle identification number(VIN). A sheet would be made with all the specifications, colour, wire wheels etc. This sheet would be duplicated several times in the control room and the VIN would be applied to each sheet using a special stamp which only changed its number after the correct number of sheets had been stamped. These sheets would then be sent to various places, stores, the appropriate body drop etc. The logistics were very complicated.

On this particular day some one (nobody knows who) had, unnoticed, picked up the stamp and pressed it down to see what it did. The result was cumulative and a disaster. It took the control room guys the whole of the rest of the shift and all of the night shift (the day shift had to stop behind to hand over to the night shift) to sort the problem.

Submitted by Terry Donnelly
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