Boating Gives Back: Correct Craft Works To Fill The Gap In Protective Equipment

Today's spotlight features Correct Craft, a marine manufacturer that has been operating for 95 years. Based in Florida with global operations, Correct Craft and its subsidiaries across the country have been developing innovative solutions to help fill the gap in the dire shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE).
 
When Orlando Health reached out to Correct Craft's Nautique Boat Company, employees answered the call to help health care workers in their community. While the health system had the special medical fabric needed for masks, they had no capacity to create the masks themselves. That's where Nautique's upholstery department stepped in with the expertise to produce the masks. Nautique also helped more people pitch in on the effort by cutting material so that others can sew an additional 5,760 masks. So far, the team at Nautique has made over 10,000 masks and is on track to complete more than 12,500. Nautique also donated extra PPE supplies to the Orlando Fire Department.
 
In addition to Nautique's production of masks for Orlando Health, one employee sprang into action to make face masks for additional health facilities, including Assisted Living in Avalon, and Doc's Urgent Care in Melbourne. This endeavor led to Nautique employees coming together to create a mask design, repurposing boat building materials, and even purchasing new sewing machines when Nautique's machines proved to be too industrial for the mask design. Nautique's team made 650 of these masks overall.
 
In addition, Watershed Innovation, a subsidiary of Correct Craft, and Nautique partnered together to produce medical-quality face shields. Coca-Cola Florida donated 1,700-pound rolls of plastic and needed a facility and machinery that could re-work the material for local manufacturers to process. So these companies rose to the occasion and cut these plastic rolls into manageable sections as part of an overall effort to produce 30,000 face shields.
 
Bill Yeargin, President and CEO of Correct Craft, said that companies who want to pivot production capabilities to join in the fight against COVID-19 must first determine if they are able to keep employees safe and effectively help health care systems.
 
"First, do you have the employees who want to come in and work and can you create a safe work environment?" Yeargin said. "Next, we recommend reaching out to the local community to see if anyone is partnering with the local health care facilities requesting PPE. They are likely able to get the material needed but do not have the resources to produce."
 
Correct Craft's Centurion & Supreme Boats, based in Merced, California has been supporting its community on the West Coast. The boat builder is making 1,000 face shields to donate to Merced-and Modesto-area hospitals, as well as the Merced Sheriff's Office. The company is also leveraging its 3D-printing capabilities to produce face mask ear-relief straps alongside the face shields.
 
On the coast of North Carolina, Correct Craft's Parker Boats has also pitched in to help health care workers in the local community. The company donated N95 certified face masks and protective suits to health care facilities in Beaufort, NC.
 
Correct Craft has taken extra steps to ensure that employees are staying safe and healthy while working. All Correct Craft facilities have been maintaining social distancing standards and employees are wearing protective gear.
 
This is part of NMMA's new series of member stories that highlight how the boating industry is stepping up to the plate during the COVID-19 pandemic. If your company has a goodwill story to share, please submit it to NMMA's COVID-19 task force at taskforce@nmma.org.
 
If your company is looking for guidance on manufacturing and/or donating PPE please visit our Ways to Help page that offers vetted sources and guidelines from FEMA and the FDA to the American Hospital Association, which helps partner companies with hospitals in need, and much more.