Postal worker suffers burns in sick prank
A practical joke gone wrong has left a postal worker in Londonderry with clumps of hair missing and burns to his scalp.
The man, who is based at the Royal Mail's Great James's Street delivery office, suffered hair loss and burns after a cream substance, believed to be acidic, had been placed inside his motorcycle helmet.
The delivery man returned from his rounds at around 4pm on Wednesday and put his helmet on without noticing the substance inside and did not discover anything was wrong until he arrived home when clumps of his hair began falling out.
Royal Mail has now launched an internal investigation and the incident has been slammed by the head of the Communications Workers Union in Derry, Charlie Kelly, who said it “beggars belief that anyone would do this”.
Mr Kelly spoke to the man and said he was in an extremely distressed state.
He added: “I spoke with him this morning and he is in a bad way. He is very shocked and distressed and will be off work for quite some time, I would imagine.
“It beggars belief that someone would do this and I know that if the culprit is found their feet won't hit the ground, they will be out of here so fast.
“He is an extremely popular member of staff and I think this was someone's idea of a practical joke given this man is a biker and has long hair, but there is nothing funny about this.
“I don't know what the actual substance was that was put in his helmet but the consequences could have been worse if it had gone down into his eyes.”
Mr Kelly added: “I don't believe it was done in a malicious way because in the 20 years I have worked in this office I have never seen a place where the staff get on as well, there is certainly nowhere like it within the Royal Mail.
“Staff here are in a state of shock and are annoyed about what happened”
The PSNI were contacted about the incident but they have withdrawn their investigation as the matter is being handled internally by Royal Mail.
A spokeswoman for Royal Mail said: “We are investigating an incident in our Great James’s Street delivery office which resulted in an employee sustaining burns. The incident has been reported to the police and our internal investigation is ongoing.”