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Aluminum dust contributed to explosion at iPad factory, China Labor Watch says

Updated Dec 19th, 2018 7:39PM EST

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Aluminum dust, which accumulates during the iPad polishing process, likely contributed to the recent explosion at an iPad plant that injured 61 workers according to the group China Labor Watch. The explosion occurred earlier this week at the Pegatron-owned Ri Teng Computer Accessory factory. According to the United States Department of Labor Occupational Health & Safety administration, aluminum can become explosive if it is “suspended in the air at the right concentration.” Safety has always been a concern at the plants Apple chooses to manufacture its products, and the Cupertino-based firm also recently admitted that 15 of its supply chain plants violate China’s environmental regulations. “We are working closely with Pegatron to understand the cause of this accident,” Apple spokeswoman Carolyn Wu told Bloomberg. “Our hearts go out to the people who were hurt in Songjiang.”