Orion Assembly http://michiganradio.org en Auto worker for a day http://michiganradio.org/post/auto-worker-day <p>Hundreds of auto workers will be assembling Chevy Sonics and Buick Veranos at GM&#39;s plant in Orion Township in just a few months.&nbsp;</p><p>Every one of those workers will go through a simulated work environment training exercise before getting anywhere near a real car. The power tools and the bolts are real, but the cars and parts are made of wood.&nbsp;</p><p>GM recently invited a group of auto journalists to take part in the exercise, to get a taste of what building a car is like.</p><p>The press is divided up into teams. Team 3&#39;s leader is Sabrina Wills, a member of UAW Local 602. She instructs us how to do the work, with each step meticulously standardized.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;Once the line starts moving, if the line moves at a normal pace, you&rsquo;re gonna find yourself in the hole,&quot; she says.</p></blockquote><p>Joanne Muller of Forbes asks,&nbsp;&quot;So what do we do then?&quot;</p><p>Wills:&nbsp;&nbsp;&quot;You&rsquo;re gonna pull for help.&nbsp; Pull your andon cord.&quot;</p><p>Team 3 will install the headlights, taillights, and bumpers. Wills says dropping a nut is par for the course when you&rsquo;re new to the job. But the cardinal sin is dropping a part. In real life, that means it&rsquo;s scrap.&nbsp;</p><p>She drops a part on the cement floor to make a point. The sound reverberates through the big factory.</p><blockquote><p>&quot;You&rsquo;re gonna hear the part hit the floor.&nbsp;&nbsp;So don&rsquo;t try to hide it under the line, because we don&rsquo;t wanna put that broken headlight on a car.&quot;</p></blockquote><p>As we wait for the line to start, Joanne Muller &ndash; who, by the way, has red hair &ndash; brings up that classic &quot;I Love Lucy&quot; episode. The one where Ethel and Lucy fall behind on the assembly line in a chocolate factory. Fri, 01 Apr 2011 03:37:35 +0000 Tracy Samilton 1878 at http://michiganradio.org Auto worker for a day