19 March 2020
Our Ref: E1/20
To: All Branches
Re: Royal Mail Group – Coronavirus Precautions & Hygiene – Supply Shortages of Gloves, Sanitizer Wipes, Soap, Detergents and Paper Towels:
Further to the full report published in LTB 125/20, this is to update Area Safety Reps, Regional Health and Safety Committees and Branches and members. Please cascade this communication to members.
The Health, Safety & Environment Department continues to press Royal Mail Assets and Royal Mail Procurement on this weekly but there is not only a national shortage, there is a global shortage of antiseptic wipes and similar products. This is also a factor due to the raw materials used in manufacturing of said products, as the chemical components required to make them are in limited supply due to increased medical and hygiene product demand where they are also used.
Royal Mail currently has ample stocks of gloves to meet demand along with soap, detergents and paper towel supplies.
Royal Mail Assets and Procurement advised us that demand for antiseptic wipes has hugely outstripped supply across the UK, and following a period of increased buying, Royal Mail Group were unable to keep up with demand, so exhausted all of the company’s supplier’s stocks of wipes across the UK. (Even the NHS and Ambulance Services have run short).
Royal Mail Group Assets and Procurement have confirmed that they purchased and supplied:
336,200 Alcohol wipes between 11th February 2020 & 4th March 2020
182,500 pairs of gloves between 24th January 2020 & 4th March 2020
At that point supplies began to run out.
On 12 March 2020, 300 Boxes containing half a million antiseptic wipes were procured and were despatched to the field on a priority basis.
In 6 weeks they expect to take delivery of 6 Million antiseptic wipes made up of 60,000 packs of 100 wipes, with a further 10,000 a week replenishment orders placed with suppliers. The orders have been placed, however if the NHS require further provisions, they will be prioritised.
Cleaning materials orders have also been advanced and RMP&FS now hold two month’s worth of supplies in order to deal with regular and any extra cleaning requirements.
List of Coronavirus LTBs issued to date by HS&E Department for your reference:- 033/20, 043/20, 054/20, 063/20, 071/20, 080/20, 093/20, 094/20, 096/20, 098/20, 102/20, 111/20, 123/20, 124/20, 125/20, 126/20, 129/20, 137/20.
I trust this will bring all Reps up to speed.
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer