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Royal Mail Group (SHE) Safety Flash FY23 009 – Vehicle Wash Bay Fires

No. 112/2023

Our Ref: E5/23

To: All Branches

Dear Colleagues,

Royal Mail Group (SHE) Safety Flash FY23 009 – Vehicle Wash Bay Fires:

Introduction, Background and Description:

Royal Mail Group’s Safety Team have issued RMG SHE Safety Flash FY23 009 following a recent spate of three fires in jet wash bays. On investigation a number of potential root causes have been identified associated with poor housekeeping and incorrect storage of items in these wash bay areas.


The Fire and Rescue Service were required to attend to extinguish the fires and make safe the area. Although there were no injuries the photos in the attached SHE Flash demonstrate the extensive damage caused by the most recent fire and potential for serious injury and death.

Key Messages, Learning Points and PiC/Managers Actions:

  • PiCs should brief all staff on the content of the attached SHE Safety Flash FY23 009.

  • PiCs should ensure that good housekeeping standards are maintained in wash bay areas and that they are regularly inspected and kept clean. Poor housekeeping was identified as one of the main root causes of the fires, e.g. wash bay areas were incorrectly used to store items, incorrect storage of cleaning chemicals, combustible materials and waste stored near sources of ignition, retractable electricity supply leads left connected with the power source on, overfilled bunded containers, items stored incorrectly which covered ventilation or blocked fire exits.


  • WSRs/ASRs please ensure that this Safety Flash is communicated and brought to the attention of all appropriate members and that actions above are deployed by PiCs/Managers.

  • ASRs to concentrate attention to this matter during Workplace Safety Inspections and where necessary ensure a review of Yard Risk Assessments and inspection of wash bays are undertaken, removing hazards.


  • Royal Mail Group (SHE) Safety Flash FY23 009 – Vehicle Wash Bay Fires.

Yours sincerely

Dave Joyce National Health, Safety & Environment Officer

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