PEI

Grocery shopper angry after seeing dead body

Atlantic Superstore staff in Charlottetown followed appropriate protocols after a customer died Friday night in the grocery store on University Avenue, the store's parent company says.

Atlantic Superstore staff in Charlottetown followed appropriate protocols after a woman died Friday night in the grocery store on University Avenue, the store's parent company says.

The company was responding after an Island woman complained to Atlantic Superstore about seeing the body of the 92-year-old woman in the produce section Friday night.

Susana Rutherford was shopping at the store with her husband and 11-year-old daughter. She said she was shocked to round the corner and see a body covered with a sheet. A paramedic was standing by.

No one warned shoppers about the disturbing scene, Rutherford told CBC News.

"There was this emergency situation and with a body in the produce section, and your store's still, you know, everybody's running like it's normal," she said.

"There was nobody warning us, or there was no one standing at the door saying, 'Please go to the other part of the store, or don't come in at all, right,' which probably would have been the preferable thing."

"It was bizarre and disrespectful that, you know, to me the store should have been closed, immediately. Get as many people out of the situation as possible," said Rutherford.

Rutherford has since sent an email to Atlantic Superstore asking the company to adopt a policy that would prevent customers from being exposed to such situations.

In an email to CBC News, a spokesperson for Superstore's parent company apologized for any concern caused by the emergency.

"This was a tragic and unfortunate situation," Julija Hunter, the vice-president of public relations for Loblaw Companies Ltd., wrote. "We have been in contact with the family of the customer who died to express our deepest sympathy. The health and safety of our customers is paramount to us,"

The email said staff followed proper procedures.

"Within the context of this emergency situation, the team acted swiftly, following appropriate processes and protocols. As per our operating protocol, we will be conducting a followup debrief of process."

Police said the cause of the woman's death is not clear.

Corrections

  • The customer who died in the Superstore was a woman, not a man. Police originally supplied incorrect information.
    Oct 11, 2013 4:41 AM AT

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