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Ocado suffers second warehouse fire caused by robots in two years


Ocado has suffered another warehouse fire fuelled by its robots, two years after a robot battery fault sparked a fire that destroyed its Andover distribution centre.
The most recent fire, at its centre in Erith south east London, is believed to have been caused by the collision of three robots on the warehouse’s grid system.

The latest incident saw the cancellation of some customer orders but Ocado says the damage was limited to less than 1% of its grid.

In February Ocado updated on the rebuilding of its new customer fulfilment centre to replace the one destroyed by the previous fire in Andover. Due to open in Autumn 2021 the new facility, also based in Andover, will employ around 1,700 people across a variety of different roles. It will be 217,000 square foot (compared with 225,000 for the previous site) and cater for up to 59,000 deliveries per week for its partner Ocado Retail at peak capacity.

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