Elderly Line Up Outside Central Coast Coles Amid Wave of Panic-Buying in Australia

Elderly people were seen lining up outside Coles on March 18, to take advantage of the designated 7 am – 8 am shopping hour reserved for vulnerable members of the community.

Coles introduced a dedicated ’Community Hour’, on March 18, for elderly and disadvantaged members of communities around Australia to do their shopping. It came after Woolworths introduced the special hour earlier that week.

Stores in cities around Australia were stripped of basic items such as toilet paper and non-perishable foods as a result of panicked shoppers stockpiling amid fears of the spreading coronavirus pandemic..

Coles and Woolworths were forced to cap the number of items allowed per transaction to quell shopper hysteria which had resulted in violent in-store confrontations.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison slammed the hoarding behaviour in a statement to the public on March 18.

“Stop it. It is not sensible, it is not helpful and it has been one of the most disappointing things I have seen in Australian behaviour in response to this crisis,” he said in Canberra.

“That is not who we are as a people. It is not necessary. It is not something that people should be doing.” Credit: @lil_froost via Storyful