As Hurricane Irma barrels closer to making landfall stateside, South Florida residents are hurrying to make last minute preparations for the Category 4 storm. Following the destruction in the Bahamas and Cuba, United States officials have strictly urged people to stock up and get to safety — but gas stations are running out of fuel, and stores are ghost towns bereft of food and water.
A video released on Twitter by on-air personality Andy Slater captured a frenzied Sam’s Club in Miramar as people fought over the store’s newest — and presumably the only remaining — shipment of water cases. The entire pallet of water bottles was claimed within 42 seconds.
Warning: This video contains graphic language.
In replies to the tweet, users single out a man clad in a purple for taking almost half the shipment for his own cart. “@SamsClub why wouldn’t you set a limit? Dude just took like 10 cases,” wrote @KinksUm.
The official national account for the Arkansas-based retailer responded, “We are consistently sending out more water and supplies for our clubs in the storms (sic) path. We want everyone to be prepared.”
The storm’s approach has led to frantic scrambling for everything from hotels and plane tickets to plywood, but water is in particular demand. Many stores have set a limit on cases purchased per customer, most ranging from two to five. Some stores have also hugely inflated prices, which, according to Attorney General Pam Bondi’s website, is unlawful in Florida. A 24-pack of water sold on Amazon for $99, reports USA Today. The same product was priced at $9.99 for delivery on Staples.com.
Hurricane Irma is expected to hit South Florida Saturday morning, Sept. 9. In addition to water, here are 17 healthy foods to stock in case of an emergency.