Outsourcing of Dangers
Outsourcing of Dangers
  • Reporter Lee Mi-yeon
  • 승인 2019.01.05 00:28
  • 댓글 0
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▲The items Kim had with him before his untimely death
▲The items Kim had with him before his untimely death

Kim Yong-kyun, a 24-year-old temporary worker, was found dead at the Taean Thermal Power Plant, crushed by a steel conveyer belt. He worked for the Korea Engineering & Power Services, a subcontractor for the Korea Western Power that is in charge of operating the conveyer belts that supply fuel to the Taean thermal power plant. Workers in the industry say it is manifestly dangerous for a single person to supervise the operations of a power plant on their own. They asked the company to change the inspection process by making sure that at least two people do the job together. However, their demand was never accepted. 

Kim was a temporary worker at the power plant. While his work should have been done by at least two people for safety reasons, he was working alone at around 1 a.m. and was stuck between conveyer belt. There was no one to shut down the machine. 

In this year, Korea adopted an integrated system for industrial accidents occurring at both prime contractors and subcontractors to prevent the shifting of responsibility. However, the system has only been implemented for limited industries. In addition, companies are outsourcing even the responsibility to prevent accidents and disasters to subcontractors to cut down labor costs. Under these circumstances, subcontract workers are inevitably exposed to threat to their safety and life. 

A flashlight he had bought for himself, not provided by the company, batteries, and instant cup noodles were the items he had in his backpack when he died. They were covered in coal dust. Those left carry a similar items again and fight the danger. 

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