Fire at ASOS Warehouse Highlights Need for Effective Fire Protection

ASOS ScreenASOS, the fashion online retailer lost a suspected 20% of their stock, stopped taking orders and dispatching them for a period in June. This was all due substantial damage caused by a fire at the company's main Barnsley warehouse.

It was a potentially devastating event that could’ve caused death of employees as well as having a severe impact on the future trading ability of the company.

On the day of the fire in a statement posted on its Facebook page, ASOS said: "We experienced a fire in our warehouse tonight and fortunately nobody was hurt. We understand there has been substantial damage but it's too early to ascertain the extent. We will not be taking any orders in the meantime. Sincere apologies for the inconvenience."

The warehouse is more than 60,000 sq. m in size and contains over 10 million boxes of packaging. South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said that several floors had been "badly damaged" by the fire. "At its height, the fire was tackled by 10 fire engines, an aerial ladder platform and a high volume Pump."

Luckily, none of the technology, automation or structure of the building was affected by the fire, but an estimated 20% of the total stock at the site has been destroyed or made unsellable by fire damage and the sprinkler systems used to fight the fire. 

The warehouse handles £1.2bn sales a year and employs 3,000 on peak days, so ensuring that they can continue to operate and that their ordering systems were maintained is vital.

When a company with that amount of business is affected by such events it also causes customers to potentially go elsewhere. Many of the ASOS’s customers vented their frustration online after the fire due to the delay in orders. ASOS were lucky and had effective evacuation and sprinkler systems in place, the implications of the fire could have been much worse, rather than just a couple of days non-trading, lost stock and some internal damage. 

Promat DURASTEEL® is a proven solution for use in warehouses for the protection of stock, IT systems, staff and logistic systems. Find out how our solutions can compliment and enhance the type of systems used at ASOS here.

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