So, for the past couple of days our store has been having a new generator installed, something used only in case of emergencies. Installation is being done by people who work specifically for the home office out of Atlanta.
Yesterday morning, I'm sitting at the Flooring desk with a fellow associate, and I see one of the installers walking down the aisle in his orange shirt emblazoned with 'Generator Crew' and I ask him how it's going.
And he says "Terrible, we hit a gas line. I need to speak to a manager right away." As I picked up the phone, he continued, "I called 911 and UGI and they're all on their way." When the Manager answered, I handed off the phone and listened to the installer repeat himself - by this time you could smell natural gas as it began to ooze around the showroom. If you've never smelled natural gas, it has a sickly sweet smell, the scent of poison since it can easily kill you.
A few seconds later all associates were told to evacuate the customers and themselves from the building. Most people were very compliant you could smell the fumes in Electrical, and Paint. The back aisle of the building was quickly turning into no man's land.
But then there were the assholes. The morons like the guy who said, "well, can't you get that sink down out of the overhead since I don't want to come back later." Or the woman who was standing by the paint wall, fanning her nose with a paint chip, as though that was going to keep the gas away. Most customers understood the seriousness of the situation, got in their cars, and left. But there were also the dawdlers who failed to understand that a stray spark could blow up the building, and they... moved... slowly. Maybe they were just inherently stupid, I don't know. There was a woman who became rather adamant that we ring her up, and her cart was rather full. Of course, we shut her down and told her she needed to leave the building immediately.
In the end, UGI turned off the gas and we were all allowed back in the building - 2 hours later. The man who wanted the sink, the woman with the paint chip, and the aggravated woman at the registers? They never returned. I don't think those people will ever understand that their inconvenience could very well have turned out to be fatal for them. Imagine, dying because you can't decide on a paint color.