Foxconn has hit the headlines numerous times over the last 18 months; we’ve had suicides, corporate espionage, no-suicide agreements and now a fire at their Chendu, China, factory which has left 2 dead and 16 injured.
16 workers are thought to have suffered minor injuries in this latest incident, although it seems there are no suspicious circumstances surrounding the incident according to initial investigations.
Foxconn released an official statement concerning the accident:
“We can confirm that at approximately 7 pm on May 20, there was an explosion at our Chengdu campus. At this point, we can also confirm that there were two fatalities with injuries to 16 other employees. We are working with medical officials to provide treatment to the injured employees and we are working with government and law enforcement officials to contact the families of all employees affected by this tragedy
The situation has been brought under control by the fire department and the cause of this explosion is being investigated by local police officials. Foxconn is cooperating fully with that investigation.
Production has been suspended at the site of the explosion until the completion of the investigation. The safety of our employees is our highest priority and we will do whatever is required to determine and address the cause of this tragic accident.”
The Foxconn plant in Chengdu in South West China employs around 400,000 people and it is always at the centre of constant rumours about harsh working conditions.
Conditions are said to have worsened in recent months as the manufacturer tries to keep up unsustainable demands from Apple, Nokia and Sony.
The huge success of the iPad 2, in particular, has seen the firm put under a lot of pressure to keep up with demand for Apple’s iPad 2 – and now that they have shut production there is more likelihood of further shortages.
The Taiwanese company is the world’s biggest computer component manufacturer but has had to deal with controversy over the claims that the predominantly young workforce is exposed to overly difficult conditions.
Foxconn responded by setting up a suicide hotline for workers and bringing in monks to clear out any nasty spirits lingering around the plant.
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