Apple 'repeatedly calls emergency services' after multiple employees injured walking into glass panes at new HQ

Chris Baynes

Place thousands of people distracted by iPhones in a building that is mostly transparent, and perhaps the results are inevitable.

Apple’s new 175-acre headquarters, centred on a glass ring which hosts 12,000 staff, has become an architectural fascination since the first designs were unveiled seven years ago.

But after the Apple Park campus opened earlier this year, the technology giant has discovered one downside to its obsession with stylish aesthetics.

Apple employees reportedly keep walking into the glass panels which form the walls of the spaceship-like building. According to Marketwatch, at least two suffered cuts to their heads and required treatment by emergency services.

It is not clear how many incidents there have been, but at least seven people were reportedly injured on the first day after staff moved in.

The building, in Cupertino, California, is surrounded by 50ft curved glass panels - the largest in the world. Inside, work spaces known as “pods” also have glass walls and doors designed to foster a culture of openness.

Apple employees told Bloomberg staff began sticking post-it notes on the glass to highlight the hazard, but claimed the warnings were removed because they detracted form the building’s design. However, another worker said other markings were already in place to identify the glass.

California health and safety law requires employers to protect their workforce “against the hazard of walking through glass” by installing barriers or conspicuous markings, leading to speculation Apple could be fined for violating workplace regulations.

But no incidents have been registered with the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Apple Park was designed by famed architect Norman Foster, based on a vision by late company co-founder Steve Jobs.

It has transformed the area around it from an asphalt sprawl into a 100,000 square-foot park, including two miles of walking and running paths, and an orchard, meadow and pond inside the hole in the middle of the doughnut-shaped building.

The Independent has contacted Apple for a comment.