The Roseville Galleria has been in the news several times lately and not in a good way. The first time was during the fire that destroyed a large portion of the mall. The second time was for the evacuation of the mall following a flash mob. Both incidents were handled poorly by management.
The incident that lead up to the fire could not be avoided, but the way the mall’s leadership handled the fire led to a costly and destructive fire. On October 21st Alexander Piggee sets fire to a store inside the Roseville Galleria. Crazy people are difficult to stop, but the major fire damage could have been avoided.
A maintenance worker shut off the sprinkler system. He claims he was told to do so by a UPS driver and the UPS driver was told by police. Where were the malls security procedures? Why was a maintenance worker able to act on his own and shut off a life saving system? This entire incident was a failure by the mall’s management.
The second incident that garnered news attention was the flash mob shutting down the mall and causing an evacuation. Flash mobs have become popular via the internet with large groups of people randomly performing songs in crowded, public places. They are usually organized via social sites like Facebook and Twitter as well as email and texting.
The Westfield Roseville Galleria mall had around 5,000 people show up for the flash mob Monday night. At about 7:25 p.m. the large crowd gathered to perform a spontaneous musical performance of the Hallelujah Chorus. Witnesses in the food court area said they heard two loud pops and felt the floor shift. The Roseville fire department said as many as 50 people called 911 to report the emergency. The fire department arrived and evacuated the mall as a precautionary measure. The mall was inspected and found to be structurally sound.
The flash mob was a well known event even to the mall’s management. The mall even sent out their own press release before the event. The event was publicized on Twitter, Facebook, as well as several local website. Why was the mall not prepared for an event they were well aware of? During the last week of shopping before Christmas it is generally not a good time to have your mall evacuated.
This is the second incident in the last couple of months that has put the Roseville Galleria in the national news. At some point Westfield management will need to evaluate the leadership they have in place at the Galleria.