TAMPA— Plumbing problems at a Wal-Mart Supercenter in Brandon has forced the store to immediately close for at least six months, according to company officials. A similar problem will close at least four other Wal-Mart sites across the country.
The Brandon store, at 1208 E. Brandon Blvd., closed Monday.
Company officials would not describe the issue with the plumbing, but Wal-Mart spokeswoman Amanda Hennenberg issued a statement, saying, “We will immediately begin the process to address these issues and intend to reopen the store as soon as all of the plumbing issues are resolved. Deciding to close a store is not a decision we make lightly, but after careful consideration, we felt it was necessary to make these repairs so we can better serve our customers and the community in the long run.”
Wal-Mart officials said the problem cropped up with clogs and leaks in plumbing that affected availability of water and drainage around the store.
Employees who work at the Brandon site can seek a transfer to another store if a similar job opening is available. Otherwise, they will be paid for 60 days of work, in accordance with state labor laws.
The problem appears to have cropped up at several other Wal-Mart sites. A store in the Odessa/Midland, Texas, area also closed Monday for similar reasons, according to a report in the Midland Reporter-Telegram.
Wal-Mart officials issued a similar statement, citing their desire to serve the community “in the long run.”
KTRE-TV in Texas reported that a Wal-Mart in Livingston, Texas, will close for six months for plumbing issues.
KOKI-TV in Oklahoma reported that a Wal-Mart in the Tulsa area will close “due to ongoing plumbing issues that will require extensive repairs.”
Officials with Wal-Mart confirmed the Tampa area was among five nationwide closing a store due to plumbing issues, and said they believed the issue did not pose a health or safety risk to employees or customers.