Amazon robot accident hospitalises 24 workers

Occurred: December 2018

A can of bear repellent was torn open by a robot at an Amazon warehouse in New Jersey, USA, resulting in one person having to be sent to intensive care and another two dozen employees sent to hospital. 

The official investigation into the incident revealed that 'an automated machine accidentally punctured a 9-ounce bear repellent can, releasing concentrated Capsaican.' Capsaicin is the major ingredient in pepper spray.

Whilst Amazon employees are not unionised, the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union said 'Amazon's automated robots put humans in life-threatening danger today, the effects of which could be catastrophic and the long-term effects for 80 plus workers are unknown.'

System 🤖

Operator: Amazon
Developer: Amazon

Country: USA

Sector: Transport/logistics

Purpose: Move inventory

Technology: Robotics
Issue: Safety; Accuracy/reliability


Page info
Type: Incident
Published: March 2023