Countdown shelves reopening date after rat spotted

Photo: Gregor Richardson
Photo: Gregor Richardson
South Dunedin’s Countdown will remain closed for another day after a rat sighting today — bringing the store’s closure to two weeks.

A Woolworths New Zealand spokeswoman said today a rat had been seen early this morning and the reopening of the store had been pushed back a day, to Saturday.

The delay marks 14 days that the supermarket has been required to shut its doors, so the company could conduct intensive pest-control work.

The spokeswoman said that the closure would not pose any risk to jobs and there was ‘‘lots of work available’’.

The store has been closed since February 10, when the company said the supermarket would close for 48 hours — one weekend — in order to deal with a rat issue.

Now, the store must remain closed until both the Ministry for Primary Industries’ New Zealand Food Safety agency and Woolworths are satisfied newly imposed additional pest-control measures have worked.

Successive rat sightings on in-store cameras and captures in traps mean the store has not been able to pass a 48-hour "clear air" period required to reopen.