On October 9th, Shi Zhaokun, a 15-year worker who had forged identification papers saying he was 20, was unable to make it to work and checked into a hospital. Soon after, he was pronounced dead of pneumonia.
Mr. Shi was one was of five sudden deaths at the factory, leading China Labor Watch to blame working conditions at Pegatron.
“Considering the sudden deaths of five people and the similar reason of the deaths, we believe there should be some relations between the tragedy and the working conditions in the factory,” said Li Qiang, who runs China Labor Watch.
Apple sent a medical delegation to investigate the incident and found no link between the working conditions at the factory and the boy's death.
"Last month, we sent independent medical experts from the U.S. and China to conduct an investigation of the (Pegatron) factory," Apple said in a statement on Thursday. "While they have found no evidence of any link to working conditions there, we realize that is of little comfort to the families who have lost their loved ones."
"Apple has a long-standing commitment to providing a safe and healthy workplace for every worker in our supply chain, and we have a team working with Pegatron at their facility to ensure that conditions meet our high standards."
Pegatron had already concluded the death was not related to work, saying the assembly line environment should not cause pneumonia.
"Pegatron has strict measures in place to verify workers' ages before and after they are hired, and we work with health and safety experts to provide a safe working environment for each and every worker," Pegatron said.