LONDON – A workers' rights group based in Hong Kong has claimed that it had exposed problems at the Foxconn facility at Chengdu prior to the explosion of Friday, May 20, which reportedly left three people dead and 15 injured.
Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM) said it had pinpointed a problem with aluminum dust in the polishing department in a report published in early May. The ultra fine dust is the result of polishing the cases of Apple products to make them shiny, SACOM said.
The explosion, which happened on Friday evening (May 20) at about 7:20pm was reportedly due to dust in a duct.
SACOM claims on its website that it conducted investigations at Foxconn plants in Chengdu in March and April and it found levels of safety were "alarming" and that workers had complained that ventilation in the polishing department was poor.
"Construction and production take place side by side at Foxconn in southern campus. The workers have to walk on a rugged and stony path every day. In some of the production buildings which are in operation, construction work is still in progress. Construction materials like reinforcing bars and bricks are piled on the road side. And construction vehicles run on the campus frequently. The production units and canteen are also full of dust just like the construction site. This raises the issue of job safety as workers are working on the construction site without adequate protective equipment," SACOM said.
Everybody's ready to blame Apple for working with companies having poor working security practices, or pressuring too much their suppliers.
Now, who can tell if their competitors are doing better?
Boycotting Apple will just result in getting someone else under the light. What do we expect to see as a difference?
This kind of issue can't be solved but by stronger regulation, by laws!
We can't prevent these things from happening, but we can limit their effect if we know about it and take proactive measures to shut them down. I will change my habits to effect their profits. Will you? We have to have knowledge of the problems to do this. Please keep the information coming.
Next time you use iPad, you can think about those poor souls that sacrificed for your enjoyment. Or for the next cup of coffee you drink, think about those farm workers. As I have seen on a documentary "You are drinking my blood." Unfortunate but this is fact of commercialization and globalization. As long as someone is willing to put up with it, it will continue to happen at somewhere else next time.
Can Americans boycott a company that allows these conditions? Can you walk away from your iPad and iPhone? It may cause price increases, but they really should build their products in a manner that does not endanger life.
Well at least the Apple products are shiney and that's all that counts to Apple.
If 50 Foxconn employees die the only concern Apple will have is will they meet their schedule.
Apple has shown again and again that their product release schedule is more important than chinese workers.
"The production units and canteen are also full of dust just like the construction site.".....In addition to the post above, these two comments not only point out a health risk but can potentially create an issue with device quality (if reported correctly in the article)left uncontrolled. Conductive aluminum dust is obviously not a good think to have floating around when assembling electronic circuit boards.
From the report
"Workers in the polishing department also complain that the department is full of aluminium dust. Even though they have worn gloves, their hands are still covered by dust and so as their face and clothes. "
The report clearly mentions about the presence of aluminum dust in the plant. Foxconn should have taken the report & working conditions more seriously.