Till operators at branches of Aldi across Britain have been warned to slow down after there was a fire at their Southend store caused by ‘excessive conveyor belt friction.’

Southend Chief Fire Inspector Reginald Burnham told our Chief Reporter that the blaze had been started by a member of staff who was scanning items at rate of more than five per second. 

FI Burnham added: ‘We have attended the store on a number of occasions and issued advice after seeing sparks fly at a number of checkouts – unfortunately it would appear that store staff have carried on regardless.’

‘During our last visit, we noticed one customer having some sort of epileptic seizure while trying to watch all of her items fly across the scanner.’

‘Another elderly gentleman couldn’t keep up and bag it all in time so he had to go and have a bit of a sit down.’

‘They could learn a thing or two from Waitrose about checkout safety. Between beeps, staff are instructed to discuss quinoa recipes, enquire about after-school Karate club progress, and ensure that everyone has taken a complimentary copy of the Daily Mail.’

‘Christmas is a high-pressure time of the year in retail, and we will have enough emergencies to deal with as it is.’