Samsung Issues Public Apology For Fatal Gas Leak At Semiconductor Plant
Samsung has issued a public apology for a January 28 gas leakage at one of the company’s semiconductor plants that resulted in the death of a contractor.
The public apology, made by company vice chairman Kwon Oh-hyun, comes after Samsung co-president Jeon Dong Su apologized to families of the workers affected and confirmed a third-party investigation into the causes of the hydrofluoric acid gas leak.
Originally reported by Yon Hap, the publication said that roughly 2.6 gallons of acid leaked–mainly in gas form–from a 132-gallon tank of hydrofluoric acid twice in 24 hours, one leak apparently at 11 p.m. local time, and then a secondary leak at 5 a.m.
The problem was allegedly not reported to local Korean authorities until hours afterwards, and after calling in maintenance firm STI Service to fix the problem–something Samsung described as “minimal.”
Samsung was fined just one million won (about $1,000 USD) for not reporting the gas leak quickly enough.
Kwon said in his statement that Samsung will revoke its application to have its Hwaseong plants certified as “green” by the government for the next five years. The company’s plants in Hwaseong were first certified as green in 1998, which meant they could bypass regular inspections. An application for re-designation had been submitted to the government in late August.
Seven people, including three of Samsung’s officials, are being investigated on charges of negligence related to the hydrofluoric acid gas leak. Kwon said that the company is taking steps to prevent similar accidents from happening.