Samsung investigates high cancer rates at chipmaking plants

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Samsung, the world’s largest manufacturer of flash memory chips, announced today it is launching an independent investigation into high rates of cancer amongst its employees. From 1998 to 2010, some 22 employees who assembled flash memory chips were diagnosed with leukemia and lymphoma, with 10 of the workers eventually succumbing to the disease. An investigation led by the South Korean government ultimately concluded in 2008 that the various chemicals used in the manufacturing of the chips were not to blame, but continued protests over the objectivity of the findings have forced Samsung’s hands. For its part, Samsung admits it should have done a better job calming fears that its workers are exposed to carcinogens, but vowed to “do our best to improve the working environment and better communicate from now on.” All workers who assembled the chips were required to wear an assortment of safety paraphernalia.

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