Faurecia is a France-based supplier of automotive components that specializes in luxury interiors and seating.
The sixth-largest international parts manufacturer was off to a great spring when it announced in late March that it had agreed to a mega-deal with BMW: it would grab a 6-million-vehicle chunk of the German automaker’s just-in-time assembly, as well as seat structures, on the Mini and 2-series platform.
It’s the biggest single order in history for Faurecia, and helped the company reach a record three-year order intake period of 62 billion Euros in sales.
But what happened at a French Faurecia factory this week was about as bizarre as it was unexpected – and probably detracted a bit from the company’s celebrating.
Several news outlets reported Monday that a military plane flying overhead accidentally dropped a bomb on the plant due to problems with its geolocation technology. Luckily, the bomb was a replica. Sputnik Europe says the French Air Force fighter jet was taking part in a regular practice run, when the replica bomb fell from the plane and onto the roof of the car factory.
While the replica does not have a detonator, it still inflicted significant damage on the facility and caused the company to immediately evacuate. Two plant workers were reportedly injured and taken to a local hospital as some 20 officers and 40 firefighters rushed the scene. The emergency personnel were fearful the bomb would explode, despite it being a replica, therefore 150 employees were removed from the scene.
The French Air Force has apologized, accepted responsibility and opened an investigation. The office of the military prosecutor says those responsible for the mistake will be punished.