The unions are ticked off…
Has no one seen I, Robot?!
On Wednesday, one of the robots in the Amazon warehouse in New Jersey accidentally punctured a can of bear repellent, which sent 24 people to the hospital. The spray affected 54 people total.
Amazon confirmed the damaged can dispersed strong fumes in the contained area of the facility, and said there is an ongoing investigation.
“The safety of our employees is our top priority, and as such, all employees in that area have been relocated to a safe place and employees experiencing symptoms are being treated onsite,” the company spokeswoman said Tuesday morning. “As a precaution, some employees have been transported to local hospitals for evaluation and treatment.”
The warehouse was cleared for re-entry around 1 p.m. by the West Windsor Health Department, but an official will revisit the building before Thursday morning as a precaution.
Those affected had trouble “breathing and burning in the throat and eyes.” One person fell into critical condition, but improved late Wednesday night. The person should leave the hospital late Thursday.
The unions have come after the robots:
Amazon employees are not unionized, but the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union issued a statement about the danger that robots pose to human workers.
“Amazon’s automated robots put humans in life-threatening danger today, the effects of which could be catastrophic and the long-term effects for 80 plus workers are unknown,” union president Stuart Appelbaum said in a statement. “The richest company in the world cannot continue to be let off the hook for putting hard working people’s lives at risk. Our union will not back down until Amazon is held accountable for these and so many more dangerous labor practices.”
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