Storm sparks shopping frenzy

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  • Crowds of people queue and shop for hurricane supplies at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Crowds of people queue and shop for hurricane supplies at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

  • Mark Stearns unpacks a trolley of batteries at  Masters Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Mark Stearns unpacks a trolley of batteries at Masters Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

  • A line to the checkout extends into Masters Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    A line to the checkout extends into Masters Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

  • Sharon Williams works quickly as she rings up items for customers at Masterds Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Sharon Williams works quickly as she rings up items for customers at Masterds Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

  • Merchandisers do their best to restock shelves at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Merchandisers do their best to restock shelves at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

  • Eugene O'Connor and Roy White load plywood into the back of a van at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Eugene O'Connor and Roy White load plywood into the back of a van at Gorhams Ltd as the Island prepares for Hurricane Gonzalo. (Photo by Mark Tatem)


Hardware stores were inundated with shoppers yesterday as the Island prepares for the arrival of Hurricane Gonzalo.

Thousands descended on Masters and Gorham’s to pick up emergency supplies.

SAL in Devonshire was also packed with residents determined to make sure they were as prepared as possible for what could be a Category 3 hurricane. Such was the demand for generators that Masters and Gorham’s ran out yesterday morning.

Masters general manager Mark Stearns said it had been very hectic.

“We sold out of generators this morning [Tuesday] and items like batteries, tarp and ropes have been flying off the shelf,” he added.

“Everything that is on the hurricane list has been going fast and furious.

“People are definitely nervous about this storm, especially after the last one. Without a doubt people will be ready and properly prepared for this one.

“We are trying to restock as quickly as we can to make sure people can buy what they need. It really has been crazy in the store today.”

Gorham’s was also jam-packed with shoppers as residents stocked up on essential hurricane products.

On Monday the store sold more than 30 generators and thousands of residents headed to the Pembroke store yesterday.

Director Henry Durham said: “It has been chaotic from the moment we opened. We completely sold out of generators on Monday and we have seen a lot of gas containers go in the last 24 hours.

“After the scare at the weekend people are really paying attention this time.

“We have seen a lot big lamps and fuel containers go, too.

“It’s been all hands on deck in the store. All the office staff have been helping out on the floor and we have brought extra cashiers in.”

SAL manager Morris Moniz said the Hermitage Road store, where customers receive a 20 per cent discount on Tuesdays, had been “chaotic” as people bought emergency supplies for the weekend.

He was amazed some customers had made the journey and braved the queues yesterday to buy non-hurricane related items, including paint and outdoor furniture.

“It’s been very busy, we sold out of generators on Monday,” Mr Moniz said. “People have been stocking up on ropes, batteries, buckets, flashlights, table lanterns — general storm supplies.

“We sold a lot of plywood — we’re not sold out, there’s a little bit left.

“We’ve had everybody working, we called everyone in.

“I think that with the fright Sunday gave us and that fresh in people’s minds, people are preparing.

“It’s going to be a hectic Wednesday but we’re running out of most supplies.

“I don’t think people are panicking, this has the potential to be a Category 3 hurricane.

“The only benefit to Sunday’s storm is that it took down a lot of the big trees that were weak so there will be less debris.”

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Published Oct 15, 2014 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 15, 2014 at 9:25 am)

Storm sparks shopping frenzy

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