Subscribe for 99¢

Corrects headline

Workers spent Tuesday morning erecting a chain link fence around the Ferguson QuikTrip and removing fuel still stored in underground tanks on the property.

The QuikTrip, at 9420 West Florissant Avenue, was looted and burned on Aug. 10, the day after Michael Brown was shot and killed by a police officer.

The store was boarded up and some privacy fencing was put up around the structure after the fire. But hundreds of protesters and media gathered at the property over the past week, and it's become a gathering spot amid the unrest.

Law-enforcement officers began barring access to the site on Monday.

Mike Thornbrugh, a QT spokesman, said the fencing is necessary to ensure public safety. Construction crews and transport tankers were on site removing fuel stored underground.

"We're just making sure no one is hurt by it," Thornbrugh said. "It's still a public safety factor."

The Tulsa, Okla.-based based chain is still assessing the damage to the property and no determination has yet been made whether the QT will reopen on the site, Thornbrugh said. The store opened in 1989.

Thornbrugh said there's been no decision on demolition or whether a new store will be built at the location.

"We haven't had the opportunity to do the due diligence, and we're in the process of doing that," he said.

QuikTrip has 75 locations in the St. Louis region. Another store a few miles away, at 10768 W. Florissant, also is closed due to the unrest. It's unknown when that store will reopen.

"We've had that one temporarily closed as well," Thornbrugh said. "At some point we hope everything calms down and we'll be able to take care of our customers, and right now we just can't do that."

Each QuikTrip employs between 15 and 20 people. Affected employees have been offered counseling and positions at other QTs, Thornbrugh said.

"When they're ready, we transfer them to other locations," he said. "We're going to take care of our people."

Lisa Brown is Business Editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.