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Tens of thousands of Ocado grocery deliveries are cancelled after blaze caused by robots

Tens of thousands of Ocado grocery deliveries are cancelled after


Tens of thousands of Ocado grocery deliveries are cancelled – after a blaze caused by robots colliding at a depot

  • More than 100 firefighters spent hours battling blaze in Erith, south London 
  • The building, on a 36-acre site, is serviced by around 3,500 robots packing food
  • It is third blaze at an Ocado warehouse in the past two years caused by robots 

Tens of thousands of Ocado grocery deliveries were cancelled following a blaze caused by robots colliding at a major distribution depot.

More than 100 firefighters spent hours battling the blaze in Erith, South-East London, after staff were evacuated.

The building, on a 36-acre site, is serviced by around 3,500 robots programmed to pack deliveries. Sparks from the collision are believed to have set alight the grid on which the robots operate.

More than 100 firefighters spent hours battling the blaze in Erith, South-East London, after staff were evacuated

More than 100 firefighters spent hours battling the blaze in Erith, South-East London, after staff were evacuated

Bosses at Ocado yesterday said damage in the blaze on Friday afternoon was limited but there would be disruption to operations for several days

Bosses at Ocado yesterday said damage in the blaze on Friday afternoon was limited but there would be disruption to operations for several days

Around 30,000 orders from across the South East are normally processed at the plant each day.

It is the third blaze at an Ocado warehouse in the past two years, including one in Andover, Hampshire – also blamed on robots – which destroyed the building.

Bosses at Ocado yesterday said damage in the blaze on Friday afternoon was limited but there would be disruption to operations for several days. 

Unhappy customers took to social media. One tweeted: ‘The Ocado fire means I have to go to the shops. Like actually, physically, literally go.’

Cole Moreton, a writer and broadcaster, said: ‘I don’t know, maybe they should get some robots that don’t cause fires.’

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