Amazon using thermal cameras to screen workers amid coronavirus pandemic: report

Amazon using thermal cameras to screen workers amid coronavirus pandemic: report
© Getty Images

Amazon has reportedly started installing thermal cameras at its warehouses to try to screen workers for fevers who may be infected with the coronavirus. 

Employees of the tech behemoth told Reuters that the cameras, which gauge how much heat people emit compared to their surroundings, require less time and contact than the forehead thermometers the company has been using to screen workers.

The move comes as the company works to curb the spread of the coronavirus at its facilities after positive cases were confirmed at more than 50 of its warehouses. The cases led some workers to walk off the job and union officials to call on Amazon to close buildings.

ADVERTISEMENT

The thermal cameras have been set up in at least six warehouses outside Los Angeles and Seattle, according to Reuters. The cameras will also replace thermometers at employee entrances to many of Amazon’s Whole Foods stores.

The company intends to perform a second check with a forehead thermometer if anyone is flagged by the thermal cameras. 

Amazon confirmed to The Hill that some warehouses have built the systems to expedite checks. The company is taking temperatures to supports its staff as they continue to deliver packages.

“We implemented daily temperature checks in our operations locations as an additional preventative measure to support the health and safety of our employees who continue to provide a critical service in our communities. We are now implementing the use of thermal cameras for temperature screening to create a more streamlined experience at some of our sites,” said Kristen Kish, an Amazon spokeswoman.