These shocking photos reveal the conditions inside a Hermes depot, where one worker claims he was left “feeling like a slave”.
Hundreds of parcels are seen strewn in the back of a van and littered across one of Hermes' 26 UK warehouses on 27 December in Bradford, West Yorkshire, just after the gruelling festive period.
Some items are seen scattered on the ground after seemingly falling off the side of a conveyor belt – while one box that stayed on was massively dented.
In one photo, a brand new £350 43” television is balanced diagonally with boxes marked “fragile” collapsed all around it.
Workers claim they are “too exhausted to care” about the conditions – and have gone as far as kicking parcels around like footballs, according to one member of staff who wished to remain anonymous.
They claim drivers are expected to deliver between 700 and 900 parcels each day in just eight hours.
The worker said they regularly work overtime and clock in over 11 hours daily to complete the “impossible” task as deliveries would otherwise pile up.
The driver claimed any attempts to raise the issue were rebuffed by management who called them “replaceable”.
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The person said they now feel “trapped” as they have two young kids and can’t afford to quit the job.
They said: “We’re not being treated like human beings – I feel like a slave.
“I think the way we’ve been made to work is absolutely disgusting. It’s mentally and physically straining.
“I’ve been in tears and when I’ve told management they simply didn’t care. They told me I was replaceable.
“We’re all too exhausted to care, I’ve seen people playing football with customers’ parcels.
“I feel trapped but I can’t afford to quit because I’ve got to take care of my family.”
The worker claims the issues highlighted in the pictures are a daily occurrence at the warehouse.
They said workers are unable to keep up with the “ridiculous” number of collections which has led to fragile items being tossed and left in precarious positions.
The worker added: “All of the parcels won't fit in the van, but we are told to take them all. So it's impossible to load it in a safe and caring way.
"If you don’t manage to get at least 700 parcels it’ll just need to be done the next day and it has a continuous knock-on effect.
“I want to do a good job, most of us do. But these working conditions just won’t allow it.”
An internal investigation by Hermes has been launched after the pictures emerged online.
A spokesperson for Hermes said: “We successfully deliver 390 million parcels a year and every one of them is important to us.
“We are shocked at these photos which do not reflect the standards we uphold within our 26-strong depot network.
“Our compliance team has launched a full investigation and we will take immediate and effective action.”
Yahoo News UK has contacted Hermes to comment on the worker’s claims.