AMBULANCES were called to an Amazon warehouse once every two days last year as workers collapsed and suffered broken bones, it has been reported.
Eleven of the company’s 21 warehouses in the UK were attended by ambulances 606 times since 2016.
There were 193 ambulance calls to 11 of them in 2018 alone, according to a Sunday Times investigation.
Their investigation also revealed that a member of staff claimed that they were disciplined when they didn’t finish a shift after falling ill and work and was taken to hospital.
In other shocking instances revealed by The Sunday Times, a pregnant member of staff at the Daventry warehouse collapsed with convulsions, one worker fell from a 10-foot walkway at a warehouse in Leicestershire and a driver at another depot was left with a traumatic injury after being hit by a metal bar.
The highest number of callouts was at Dunstable’s 1,800-strong warehouse had ambulances attend 95 times from 2016 to August this year.
The most common reason ambulances were called to Amazon warehouses, which are called ‘fulfilment centres’ were for fainting, breathing and chest pain.
Between January 2016 and August 2019 there were 159 cases of chest pain, 85 for staff being found unconscious, 51 of the callouts were for breathing problems, 38 for trauma, 20 cases of reported falls and two electric shocks at seven warehouses.
Staff called for ambulances 19 times during the same period at the Ford engine plant in Bridgend, Wales, which has 1,700 staff,
At the Ford engine plant in Bridgend, Wales, which has 1,700 staff, ambulances were called 19 times during the same time period.
At UK fulfilment centres, ambulance calls occurred at a rate of 0.000003 per worked hour, which is dramatically low.
Only three ambulances have visited the Ocado warehouse in Tamworth, Staffordshire, which has 1,500 workers, since 2016.
Tim Roache, the general secretary of the GMB trade union, which has hundreds of members across Amazon sites, told the Sunday Times: “Behind the slick exterior lie working practices that owe more to Victorian workhouses than what we would expect of a reputable online retailer.”
The company told the Sunday Times: “Amazon is a safe place to work.
“We benchmark against UK national data, published by the Health and Safety Executive, confirming we have over 40 per cent fewer injuries, on average, than other transportation and warehousing businesses in the UK.
“At UK fulfilment centres, ambulance calls occurred at a rate of 0.000003 per worked hour, which is dramatically low.”
Last month, a dad opened his Amazon delivery to find a note begging help saying workers were treated “like slaves”.
In July, Amazon warehouse workers claimed they were being forced to wee in bottles rather than go to the toilet during their shifts.
Union officials claimed more than 600 reports have been made from Amazon warehouses to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) over the past four years.
A spokesman said: “These include workers using plastic bottles to urinate in instead of going to the toilet, and pregnant women have been forced to stand for hours on end, with some pregnant women being targeted for dismissal.”
Amazon has made it clear that they have plenty of toilets which their employees can use at their pleasure.
“We have plenty of toilets and employees can take a bathroom break whenever they choose.
“We can only conclude that the people who attend the events are simply not informed.
MOST READ IN NEWS
“We encourage everyone to book a tour of one of our fulfilment centres and compare our overall pay, benefits, and workplace environment to other retailers and major employers across the country.”
Amazon was founded in 1994 by Jeff Bezos and Forbes magazine puts his fortune at £92.5bn — making him the richest person in the world.
The Sun Online contacted Amazon for a comment.
The company has 21 warehouses in the UK[/caption]
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at [email protected] or call 0207 782 4368. You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.