Caterpillar Inc. might close additional facilities temporarily, depending on the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
In a release issued Thursday, the earthmoving-equipment manufacturer with a significant Peoria presence stated its supply chain is beginning to be affected by the viral outbreak.
Previously, Caterpillar announced temporary closure of its foundry near Mapleton. That closure was implemented because of a decrease in product demand, not because of COVID-19, according to the Deerfield-based company.
Caterpillar did not list any additional sites where work has been stopped.
As for supplies, Caterpillar stated its plans might include using alternative sources, redirecting orders and prioritizing redistribution of the most impactful parts.
Caterpillar also withdrew its financial outlook for 2020. Coronavirus-related factors will have an impact on first-quarter results, the company stated.
Details are to be provided April 28, when Caterpillar is to announce first-quarter earnings.
"The magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic ... cannot be reasonably estimated at this time due to the rapid development and fluidity of the situation," the company stated.
"It will be determined by the duration of the pandemic, its geographic spread, business disruptions and the overall impact on the global economy.
Caterpillar's financial position remains strong, the company stated. At the end of last year, Caterpillar had $8.3 billion in cash reserves and available global credit of $10.5 billion.
The company has continued its operations in Illinois, although most businesses in the state have been ordered to close. Services related to construction and mining are considered essential and aren't subject to the closure order.
Preventative health measures implemented at Caterpillar facilities include increased frequency of cleaning and disinfecting, remote working when possible and restrictions on visitors and business travel.