July 06, 2016 - 1:58 PM
SALMON ARM - Up to 10 people inside a Salmon Arm store were affected when a customer accidentally discharged a can of bear spray, thinking it was a fragrance spray.
The incident happened yesterday, July 5, at a business on Beatty Avenue NW that takes donated items. According to RCMP spokesperson Dan Moskaluk, the can of bear spray made it past the store’s screening process and ended up on a shelf.
A customer in his 70s did not know what the can contained because the label was concealed, and discharged it thinking it was a fragrance spray, Moskaluk says.
Up to 10 people including employees, patrons and the man who discharged the spray were affected and suffered the typical symptoms of eye irritation and in some cases, difficulty breathing, Moskaluk says.
B.C. Ambulance was called to look people over, but no one was sent to the hospital.
“On police arrival, the male who had discharged the container immediately identified himself and answered all police questions. Officers confirmed that this was not an act of someone with any intent to cause people harm,” Moskaluk says.
The business is taking internal action to determine how the can of aerosol bear repellent made it past their screening process of donated goods and ended up on the shelf, Moskaluk says.
Police are not releasing the name of the store.
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