Woman trapped in Subway fridge for 8 hours wrote ‘help me’ in tomato sauce

A Subway employee who was locked in the store’s fridge for eight hours overnight used tomato sauce to write ‘help me’ on pieces of cardboard hoping her message would be seen by CCTV operators.

Karlee Daubeney hoped her desperate message would be seen but was not freed until 7:30am the next morning when a colleague returned to work. The store is facing court over the incident, which occurred in December last year.

“At first I was in a state of panic and I was looking for anything that could have opened the door,” she told the Gloucester Citizen. “I was trying to write ‘help’ on pieces of cardboard to slide under the door. I think it was with ketchup or mayonnaise.

“It got to the stage I was so cold I didn’t have the energy to bang on the door and I only had leggings and a Subway top on. My muscles became so cold I found it really hard to walk for a few days, I had migraines and dry skin around my nose. When I went to hospital the next day I was told I was close to having hypothermia and I made myself as warm as I could when I got home.”

The 20-year-old Gloucester woman, who recreated the incident in a photo shoot for the local paper, said she still suffered from anxiety over the incident, and becomes nervous if a door to a room shuts behind her.

“I was obviously on shift alone which was scary enough as the windows had been kicked in a few weeks before and I didn’t feel comfortable being there,” she said.

“I didn’t leave the house for a long time afterwards as I was suffering from really bad panic attacks — it has been nearly a year and I still suffer from anxiety.”

The franchisee has been accused of breaching workplace health and safety laws by not ensuring the safety and welfare of its employees. It entered a not guilty plea at the first hearing on October 26.

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