One morning in March, when the first case arrived at the Liberian unit of Japan’s Bridgestone Corp… managers sat around a rubber-tree table and googled “Ebola,” said Ed Garcia, president of Firestone Natural Rubber Company LLC. Then they built two Ebola isolation clinics, using shipping containers and plastic wrap. They trained their janitors how to bury Ebola corpses. Their agricultural surveyors mapped the virus as it spread house to house, and teachers at the company’s schools went door-to-door to explain the disease.
“It was like flying an airplane and reading the manual at the same time,” said Philippines-born Mr. Garcia, who runs this 185-square-mile stretch of rubber trees.
Six months later, Firestone has turned the tide of infections, offering a sanctuary of health in a country where cases are doubling every three weeks.