Robot kills man; prosecutors considering charges


Frankfurt: Has the robot uprising finally begun? A robot at a Volkswagen production plant in Baunatal, near Frankfurt, was involved in the death of a worker in somewhat suspicious circumstances, and prosecutors are reportedly trying to figure out if they can lay charges.

According to reports, a 22-year-old contractor was among a team of workers setting up a robot which was stationary. However, the robot apparently powered up and crushed the worker against a metal plate, and he later died from his injuries. At this point it is unclear what caused the incident, although investigators tend to believe the cause was more likely human error rather than robotic malevolence. The robot involved is generally used for manipulating auto parts, and hasn’t been involved in any other violent disturbances in the past, although plant officials will certainly be keeping a close eye on the bot in future.

The German news agency DPA has reported that prosecutors are currently considering whether they will press charges – but at this point they’re not quite sure who, or what, should bear the responsibility for the tragedy. Quad-City Times has the full story.