Explosion rocks Foxconn iPad factory in Chengdu, China; 2 dead, 16 injured

“An explosion took place at one plant of Foxconn International, an affiliate of Taiwan’s Hon Hai Group and a major OEM supplier of Apple Computer’s hot-selling iPhones and iPads, last night in Chengdu City of China’s southwestern Sichuan County,” The China Post reports.

“A China Central TV reporter who was at the scene said, a witness told reporters and firemen that the explosion happened at 19:10 p.m.,” The China Post reports. “One doctor at a hospital nearby said he had already received half a dozen of people injured, and more injuries were on the way, said the CCTV report.”

The China Post reports, “The explosion caused many materials cast out from the building, and there were at least hundreds or more of workers rushed out of the building amid heavy smokes. The whole building was engulfed in fire and smoke as dozens of fire engines, ambulances, and police cars quickly rushed to the scene.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: See raw video here.

James T. Areddy reports for The Wall Street Journal, “A large explosion ripped through a Foxconn high-tech plant in southwestern China Friday night, killing at least two people, a government official said.”

“The facility, near Chengdu, has in the past been identified in media as a manufacturing location for Apple Inc.’s iPad tablet computer,” Areddy reports. “A statement from the news department of the Chengdu Municipal government said two people are confirmed dead and 16 injured, including three seriously. The government appeared to rule out foul play, saying the explosion didn’t have a human factor.”

Areddy reports, “Details of the explosion are sketchy but video posted to the Internet and broadcast by China Central Television shows black billowing smoke from the massive facility.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “mason2046” for the heads up.]

Related article:
‘Light dust’ blamed for explosion at Foxconn iPad 2 factory in Chengdu – May 20, 2011

42 Comments

  1. Foxconn Manager looking at a scorched body laying on the factory floor:
    “Dock that chink a day’s pay for sleeping on the job!”

    I’m going to hell, I know.

    1. Cubert,
      It’s one thing to think it, it’s another to say it. If you avoid saying it long enough, maybe you’ll stop thinking it eventually.
      Keep in mind that 2 people died. You didn’t know them, and they probably looked different than you, but they were still people. If you’re looking to be edgy, social commentary on the Chinese people being used like property certainly works, but avoid the racial epithets. It takes what could have been (with a little more thought) a challenging statement and instead just makes people see you as an uncaring racist, regardless of whether or not you are.

      Try to keep it classy, chief.

    2. I’m not sure about hell; however, you may find more than a few who would struggle to find any humour or a whiff of wit in your comment. It is also possible that yours went over my head.

    3. Cubert, et al:

      Try this on for size:

      Foxconn’s General Manager, seeing a scorched body laying on the factory floor, turns to his aide and says:
      “Make sure we don’t pay him for today…”

      1. I am, and got the reference immediately. Blazing Saddles was a wonderful satire on all kinds of things, but racism was a special target.

        Wonderful movie, thanks for the memories!

    1. Ok, Steve Ballmer would stand out in the crowd there. But, I was thinking the same thing too. I also considered Dell, HP, Nokia, … However, they lack the innovative thinking to pull this off.

      I always feel bad for those that get hurt or killed in these things. Safety should be top item at work.

  2. It’s a factory assembling electronic products. What sort of volatile material would be kept on site in sufficient quantities to cause an explosion? It’s not like it’s a chemical plant or oil refinery.

      1. These would have been kept in stainless steel casks probably with a bleed mechanism to recapture gases from evaporation. In any event there should have been gauges with an automatic vent system to prevent excessive build up of combustible gases. If concentrations are below ignitable levels and there is absence of oxygen an ignition and therefore explosion should not occur.

        1. Sure, assuming the chemicals were actually stored properly. Obviously something was not done correctly or some safety system (if there was one) malfunctioned.

  3. Sympathies to the injured and dead and their families.

    Interesting to see how this affects Apple’s summer release schedule and supply lines.

    And now let’s see if anonymous and blurry photos of ‘partly-blown-up’ parts of new Apple products appear on the rumor sites.

  4. Awfully early to declare that no “human factors” were involved in the explosion. You don’t typically have an event like this unless someone made a mistake, either in the storage of volatile materials, design of safety systems, or lack of maintenance of those systems. Of course, it could be a defective piece of equipment which permitted the explosion to occur, but if they’re working with such volatile materials, there should be more than one safety system in place.

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