Over 2,000 employees of a Wintek factory in Suzhou, China went on strike last Friday, violently protesting unfair pay and hazardous working conditions. Workers complained that the company planned to cancel a year-end bonus, and even worse, that people are dying from long-term exposure to a toxicant used in the factory.
According to one employee, at least four workers have died from overexposure to hexane, a chemical used to clean touchscreen panels. China Daily notes that hexane is known to cause extensive peripheral nervous system failure in humans, with symptoms like tingling and cramps in the arms and legs, general muscular weakness, muscular atrophy, as well as a loss of coordination and vision.
In response, the company said it would distribute a bonus before the Chinese Spring Festival, while local authorities said no deaths have been reported, and 47 people who showed symptoms of hexane poisoning have received treatment. Employees remain discontent with the government's action and seek further investigation.