The Save-On-Foods in Merritt was closed due to a refrigeration leak early this morning. There were reports of a layer of fog in the store and fire crews attended the scene as members were evacuated and sent home until further notice.
“I spoke with the shop steward today, and the union has been in contact with our Health & Safety Committee in the store,“ said Secretary-Treasurer Patrick Johnson. “We’ve made our members aware of the situation and provided them with information about the hazards involved with exposure to refrigerant gases and how to stay safe.“
Secretary-Treasurer Johnson said the union has also been in contact with the employer’s health and safety representative and labour relations representative. “We are waiting to hear confirmation of what refrigerant was leaked. The employer is required to conduct an investigation under the Worker Compensation Act, which includes examining any process or procedures that were deficient, such as the evacuation procedure. They will also need to identify the root cause of the incident,“ he explained. “We will definitely be following up with Save-On-Foods to make sure our members get answers.“
Secretary-Treasurer Johnson thanked the Merritt Fire Department for their swift and professional response.