Accidents happen all the time and everywhere. Some cost nothing an others (at the worst case of course) may cost lives. Now in each case it is in general clear from the beginning who is to blame. Even when it comes to the most complicated stories that are solved to the court, it is extremely rare for a case to remain unsolved due to incapability of finding the person who is in charge.
Things however, get more complicated when the parties involved in the accident are not all humans. And as you probably have guessed already that is the case right here. An accident that happened between a man and a….robot! Ultimately, it costed the man’s life but it still remains unknown whether it was the robot’s fault or the man’s
The news are now making the trip around the world since it is one of the very few times that technology turns against humans giving us the impression that AI machines will rebel against all mankind. In fact, some articles around the very same topic are titled with headlines such as “The rise of the machines”. Of course there no need to worry, it’s just an impression for those who would love to find themselves in a similar situation (we call it the Terminator Effect).
But still, it is not usual to hear that a robot killed a worker in Volkswagen’s factory when the robot grabbed him and crushed him on a metal plate.
BBC covered the news and mentioned that the 22yearold worker actually left his last breath in the hospital after the accident that happened on a factory located at Baunatal, which is 100 km. north of Frankfurt. The employee was working on the team who was responsible for installing the robot, according to the company, which stated that the whole accident was due to the human’s mistake and not the robot’s.
The robot can be programmed to perform various tasks on the assembly line and normally, it functions inside a defined space, by grabbing car parts and manipulating them as it fits to the situation.
When the unfortunate incident took place, one more employee was present, who thankfully did not get harmed. An investigation however will now be needed to be conducted in order for the appropriate authorities to determine the nature of the accident and find whether the human or the robot is responsible. In case it is the robot’s fault, charges may be filed even though the “whom” might be a question that will need to be answered first, as the German agency “DPA” mentions.
The story is tragic and it raises the interest since the fault is not clear yet. That leads us to the conclusion that we should hear soon about the incident, when the authorities who will investigate the accident, come up with some new information. Until then, stay tuned to read all the latest news about this and many other hot topics!