The snow storm that has hit the Community of Madrid since last Friday has trapped 90 people at Gran Plaza 2 Shopping Center in Majadahonda, many of them sleeping on cardboard.
Most of those affected were workers of this mall, which has more than 190 stores, but also customers who were trapped due to the mobility difficulties to return to their homes due to the accumulation of snow on the roads and transportation problems.
Some photographs of employees of the Zara store in this shopping center sleeping on cardboard in the store itself have been viralized during the weekend on the social network Twitter.
After the controversy generated, from Gran Plaza 2 they have explained that the shopping center facilities remained open until 8 p.m. on Friday, at which time mobility complications were already evident in the region, and has denied that the premises of the same were forced to meet the closing time established for 22 hours.
“Each operator located in our Shopping Center is fully free to make their own decision (or abide by the rules of the plants to which they belong) in the face of the exceptional situation experienced due to the snow alert, without being penalized at all. “, has clarified the management of the center in a statement.
In this sense, it has clarified that at no time from the management was threatened with any type of penalty to those operators that close before 10 pm, the usual closing time.
“There were operators that closed earlier, and others that reacted later, being very dangerous to undertake the return to their homes by car,” he specified.
In any case, a total of 90 people, including workers and customers, were trapped in its facilities, some of whom remained there early this Sunday.
One of them, Iván Alcalá, who works in a restaurant in that shopping center, explained that many of those affected spent the night sleeping on cardboard.
“At six o’clock in the afternoon on Friday we tried to leave, people arrived by car at the Majadahonda roundabout and they stayed there because of the amount of snow and there was no longer any passage. We all had to go back to the mall“, has related in statements to RTVE collected by Europa Press.
A worker at the Zara store, identified as @Sarihta_Madrid, has reported on Twitter her “adventure” by having to spend the night at the establishment’s facilities.
“We prefer to return to the store after hours locked in the carAlthough the Civil Guard offered us a sports center and you cannot get to the nearest hotel, which Zara offered us. An adventure, but better in our store than anywhere else! “, He explained.
In any case, from Gran Plaza 2 they have clarified that to all the people “who have stayed” and first thing on Sunday they remain in the shopping center “they have been given water, dinner, breakfast and food at all times“through the various restaurants that remained open.
“Our security personnel are carrying out an effective task to cover the food and hygiene needs of all people, and they are also coordinated with the Majadahonda Local Police force,” he clarified.
Likewise, the management of the shopping center has highlighted that in these facilities they have also taken refuge and treated drivers who were diverted by police officers from towns in the mountains.
“The option has also been given to transfer trapped people to sports centers in Majadahonda, although the authorities recommend staying in our space for reasons of comfort and safety,” he explained.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.