Alarm bells sound over fire scare

PUBLISHED: 11:08 09 February 2006 | UPDATED: 09:35 06 May 2010

The Tesco store

The Tesco store

A WOMAN has branded a fire evacuation at a major supermarket as a farce . The customer, who does not wish to be identified, described staff at the Tesco store in Baldock looking at one another with their hands in the air, saying what s going on? whil

A WOMAN has branded a fire evacuation at a major supermarket as a "farce".

The customer, who does not wish to be identified, described staff at the Tesco store in Baldock "looking at one another with their hands in the air, saying 'what's going on?'" while the alarm was ringing.

After the alarm began, the customer initially saw people leaving the tills and going outside.

She was told to go outside by one shop assistant, but as she made to leave was sent back into the building.

She was eventually told to evacuate the building and remained in the car park for 10 minutes.

The customer, who after the evacuation continued with her shopping and remained in the store until 12.30pm, said that no announcements were made via the tannoy either during or after the event.

She added: "It's just a farce. It just seems crazy that that's how they handle a fire alarm, if it was a fire alarm."

A spokesman for Tesco said: "A fire alarm was accidentally activated on Friday, January 27 in the store.

"Staff immediately began to implement the practised fire drill.

"Unfortunately, the store's tannoy was temporarily not working, which may not have helped the process of explaining the situation to customers.

"The vast majority, however, were communicated with and calmly ushered out of the store and staff acted in a very measured and professional way.

"We do of course regret if anyone was inconvenienced by the incident and thank our customers very much indeed for their support.

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