Boat manufacturing employees make coronavirus masks to help fight pandemic

Upholsterers for Sea Ray, Boston Whaler boats switch gears to stop spread of COVID-19

Employees that make cushions for Sea Ray and Boston Whaler boats are now using their fabric skills to fight the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. – Employees that make cushions for Sea Ray and Boston Whaler boats are now using their fabric skills to fight the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Officials with the Brunswick Corporation said production of the masks is taking place at its integrated manufacturing center on Sykes Creek.

Director of operations Bill Gowan said it's an easy transition for workers in the fabric line.

“We’ve got some of the best upholsterers in the world. We were able to quickly train our team on how to produce a mask that met CDC guidelines,” Gowan said.

Masks are being made for Brunswick employees around the world.

Brunswick officials said they also donated 15,000 masks that the company previously purchased to hospitals and first responders in three parts of the country, including Brevard County.

Gowan described the manufacturing process.

"Our team cuts material and that material is then kitted and sent to our upholstery shop that would normally make boat cushions, but in this case has been transformed to sew and to assemble masks," he said.

Brunswick said it's also working to make parts for face shields and even ventilators.

About the products the company is best known for making, Brunswick employees said even amid this pandemic, they continue to make boats, too.


About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.