South Korea’s Hynix Says 800 Workers to Stay Home After Trainee Had Contact With Virus Patient

February 20, 2020Updated: February 20, 2020

South Korean chipmaker SK Hynix said on Feb. 19 that 800 of its workers had quarantined themselves as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but its production in the city of Icheon has not been affected.

The move came after one trainee had close contact with a virus patient in the southeastern city of Daegu, the epicenter of an outbreak in South Korea.

South Korea COVID-19
Vissel Kobe fans are tested for signs of the coronavirus ahead of a match at the Suwon World Cup Stadium in Suwon, South Korea, on Feb. 19, 2020. (Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images)

SK Hynix, the world’s No.2 memory chipmaker which counts Apple and Huawei among its customers, said another trainee also had symptoms of pneumonia. The two trainees tested negative for the virus, but will undergo a second test.

A surge in confirmed cases linked to a local church in Daegu this week sparked fears of wider transmission.

A fan in the stands wear a mask in light of novel coronavirus ahead of a match at the Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium in Ulsan, South Korea, on Feb. 11, 2020. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

The 800 include 280 trainees, who have not yet started working on production lines, and accounts for a fraction of its workforce of 18,000 people in Incheon, a spokeswoman said.

SK Hynix has closed its training center and hospital in Icheon, southeast of Seoul.

By Hyunjoo Jin