Apple supplier Catcher Technology confirms gas leak at China plant

Catcher Technology, a casing supplier for Apple Inc, confirmed on Friday a report that a gas leak at one of its plants in Suzhou, eastern China, had caused injuries, but said the accident was unrelated to production.

China’s Xinhua Net reported late on Thursday that a chlorine gas leak during waste water processing at the plant earlier in the day had caused one death and left four people in comas.

“It has nothing to do with our production or material used. It happened when a contractor was processing waste; it was routine work. We are currently trying to understand what has gone wrong,” James Wu, Catcher’s vice president of corporate finance, told Reuters.

Wu did not confirm the number of the casualties or the nature of their injuries.

The company however later issued a statement, saying the accident involved five workers, though it also did not detail the nature of any injuries.

“The accident happened at the waste disposal facility and is not directly related to any manufacturing process, factory, or materials. This is also a single and isolated event,” the statement said.

Shares of Catcher plunged as much as 7 percent in early Taipei trading on Friday, the maximum allowed in a session, but trimmed losses to 0.91 percent at the close. The main TAIEX index was up 2.21 percent.

Last October, a separate Catcher plant in Suzhou was ordered closed for a time because of complaints from nearby residents about strong odours from gas emissions.

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