In last month’s news, an explosion was reported in a Foxconn manufacturing plant in China. The explosion killed 3 workers and left others seriously injured. In a recent report, the plant owned by Taiwanese-based Company Hon Hai Precision Industry has resumed operations.
In past reports, the explosion was said to have been caused by polishing and processing dust particles getting struck by lightning. Now, the manufacturing plant based in Chengdu, China says that the explosion was most likely caused by the ignition of aluminum dust found in its ventilation ducts. The plant is still undergoing investigations, but has reopened the plant to resume the manufacturing of iPad 2 and iPhone 4. In addition, the plant has enhanced the ventilation in its workshops as well as restructuring its practices and policies to prevent the accident from ever happening again. It has also improved the way in which it disposes of these dust particles.
On another note, there have been reports that the Foxconn plant explosion has crippled Apple’s ability to supply the growing demand for the iPad 2. After selling 4.69 million units on the first quarter of this year, they have struggled to keep up with the tablet’s rising demand. The plant’s suspension of operation due to an ongoing investigation of the accident has further delayed shipments of the said tablet.
With the reopening of the plant, the Cupertino technology giant can now keep up with the demand of their popular 2nd generation tablet. However, in the long time that the plant suspended operations, has competing tablets such as the Motorola Xoom gained enough momentum? Did the long wait for the iPad 2 cause customers to get Android Honeycomb tablets instead? We’ll just have to wait and see if the reopening of the Foxconn plant can satisfy the demand for the popular tablet.