South Korean robot kills worker, report

News Story
- 16 Nov 2023 ( #1154 ) - South Gyeongsang, Korea, Republic Of
1 min read

A technician was crushed to death at a South Korean factory by an industrial robot that mistook the man for a box of vegetables, the Independent newspaper reports, citing Yonhap news agency. 

The robotics company employee was inspecting the robotic arm as it was lifting boxes of capsicum and moving them onto pallets at an agricultural product distribution centre in South Gyeongsang province. 

The robot picked the man up and pushed him against the conveyor belt, crushing his face and chest. 

He later succumbed to the injuries in hospital.

Police said the man, aged in his 40s, had been checking the robot's sensor operations ahead of a test run at the vegetable sorting plant, owned by Dongseong Export Agricultural Complex.

The test had originally been planned for 6 November, but was pushed back by two days due to problems with the robot's sensor.

The man was running checks on the machine late into the night when it malfunctioned.

A Dongseong Export Agricultural Complex spokesperson later called for a "precise and safe" system to be established, according to the report.

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