SAN FRANCISCO :
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has offered to make medical ventilators from its Fremont, California factory for coronavirus sufferers.
Responding to Pakistan's Science and Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhry, a tweet from a Musk said the company would make ventilators if there is a shortage.
"Please repurpose your factory to make ventilators which are needed ASAP. I am a Tesla owner and love the company. You have to stop being an idiot about this. This is a massive disaster. Ask the doctors in the field," read a tweet by Abbas that was aimed at Musk.
"Tesla makes cars with sophisticated hvac systems. SpaceX makes spacecraft with life support systems. Ventilators are not difficult, but cannot be produced instantly," said Musk over Twitter, and further adding, "Which hospitals have these shortages you speak of right now?"
The need for additional ventilators has taken center stage in the ongoing fight against the spread of coronavirus and the ventilator has become a critical first line of defense for patients infected by the virus.
Additionally, according to BuzzFeed News Tesla will reduce its workforce at its Fremont, California, car factory after the local Sheriff's Office said the company was not complying with a three-week shelter-in-place order meant to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The shelter-in-place order was announced on Monday in six counties in the San Francisco Bay Area, and it went into effect early Tuesday morning.
Musk earlier underplayed the coronavirus scare.
After calling coronavirus panic dumb and mind-killer on Twitter, Musk wrote an email to employees in Bay Area, saying "coronavirus panic is worse than virus itself".
"First, I'd like to be super clear that if you feel the slightest bit ill or even uncomfortable, please don't feel obligated to come to work. I will personally be at work, but that is just me. Totally ok if you want to stay home for any reason," he said in the email seen by electrek.co.
"A lot of rumours are flying around, but, to the best of our knowledge, no one at Tesla (over 56,000 people) has tested positive for COVID-19. I will inform you immediately if anything changes," he added.
At least 181 people in India have so far tested positive for the novel coronavirus which has now affected over 2 lakh people globally.
This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.