Two weeks after a fatal explosion, it's business as usual at Foxconn's factory in Chengdu.
After an explosion in a Chinese factory that makes iPads for Apple (AAPL) killed three workers and injured 15 more, one analyst estimated that Apple's quarterly iPad production numbers might fall by as much as 2.8 million units -- speculation that helped drive the company's shares down more than 1.5% that day.
Two weeks later, it's clear that those fears were overblown. According to the Wall Street Journal, the affected plants in Chengdu were restarted Thursday, two weeks to the day after the explosion. Susquehanna's Jeff Fidacaro, who had earlier estimated that the accident might cut into Apple's production by 200,000 to 500,000 units, issued a report to clients suggesting that by shifting work to other facilities and stepping up overtime, Foxconn -- which owns the factory-- would have made up the difference by the end of June. He's now conservatively estimating that Apple will ship 7.5 million iPads this quarter. Other analysts put that number as high as 10 million, more than twice the 4.7 million iPads Apple sold last quarter.
Meanwhile, the Chengdu plant is not without its problems. M.I.C. Gadget, the Chinese blog that broke the news of the explosion, reports that a young Foxconn worker died last week after jumping out of fifth-floor dormitory window. In a three-month period last spring, nine Foxconn workers leaped to their death from their dorms at Foxconn's factory city in Shenzhen.
The explosion that killed three in Chengdu on Friday has been traced to a dust-collecting duct
There were several developments over the weekend following the explosion that killed three and injured 15 in a factory in southwest China that builds iPads for Apple (AAPL). (See Inside the Apple iPad factory.)
The third death was confirmed. Six of the injured have been sent home. The rest are still hospitalized.
The blast was traced to MORE
The site of Friday's explosion was massive 8-building complex thrown together in a record 70 days
When a polishing workshop blew up in Foxconn's new factory complex in Chengdu, China, it was an English-language website operating, as they put it, "outside the Great Firewall of China, temporarily," that broke the news and provided U.S. media outlets with videos, photos and regular updates.
On Saturday, the website -- M.I.C. Gadget -- posted a background MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 21, 2011 11:05 AM ET
An analyst sketches out the economic implications in two scenarios: One serious, one less so
RBC capital's Mike Abramsky was the first analyst out of the gate Friday with a note to clients assessing the effect on Apple (AAPL) of the explosion at Foxconn's Chengdu plant.
According to Abramsky, the plant is one of two primary manufacturing sites where the iPad 2 is produced, the other being Foxconn's original Shenzhen facility. His MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 20, 2011 2:55 PM ET
Japan has ordered an investigation of the first generation iPod nano for possible defects after one started emitting sparks while being charged. According to wire service reports, the problem surfaced in January in Kanagawa Prefecture southwest of Tokyo, and Apple (AAPL) reported it to the government in March.
An official at Japan's ministry of trade and economy said a defect is suspected in the lithium-ion battery in the iPod Nano, model MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Mar 12, 2008 7:26 AM ET
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