Twitter sees funny side of toilet paper shortage as Covid panic buying hits US stores again after cases spike

TOILET paper is flying off the shelves once again as states tighten coronavirus restrictions – with Twitter users ridiculing panic-stricken shoppers in a series of hilarious memes.

Covid-19 cases in the US on Saturday passed 12million, with more than 255,000 deaths as 22 states have imposed restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the virus.

Toilet paper is flying off the shelves as Americans prepare for a tightening of Covid restrictions

Shoppers have been pictured panic-buying for the second time this year

A shopper walks past empty shelves in the paper products aisle of a store in Burbank, California

Stores in Washington, California, Virginia, Colorado, Ohio, New Jersey, New York, Michigan and Missouri have all been affected by the frenzy.

It’s the second time this year that shoppers appear to be panic buying as stores were left struggling to replenish their stocks during the first shutdown in spring.

Walmart on Friday said it was “seeing pockets of lower than normal availability” for toilet paper and cleaning supplies in some communities as infections rage virtually unchecked across most of the country.

“Walmarts are still mostly out of Lysol wipes, and toilet paper is out again,” said Whitley Hatcher, 31, a collections specialist in Tucson, Arizona.

“I think people are seeing the empty shelves at bigger stores and panic buying,” Whitley said.

At a Costco in Vancouver, Washington, items that are out-of-stock include toilet paper, cleaning wipes, gloves, and Spam canned meat.

Toilet paper was also out-of-stock at Costco stores in Fresno and Los Angeles.

Shelves that are usually stocked with toilet paper are empty at a Walmart in Pennsylvania

Social media users took to Twitter to mock shoppers who were stockpiling on necessities

Bruce Liberman, of Atlanta, told WSB: “‘I was afraid there may be a shortage coming in the near future. I’d rather go ahead and get it now than try to get it online when it might not be available.”                 

The empty shelves have led to Twitter users mocking panicked shoppers who are stockpiling as Covid-19 cases continue to rise.

One consumer compared full shelves containing sanitizing wipes at Target, with an empty toilet roll aisle.

Another posted an image of a demented-looking Goofy with the caption aimed at those who stockpiled in the spring: “‘I’ll f***** do it again’.”

A third posted an image of a man looking shocked with the caption: “Yall not about to take all the damn paper towels and toilet paper again.”

One Twitter user, who posted an image of a cheese grater, said: “If 2020 was Toilet Paper.”

Amid an alarming rise in numbers of coronavirus cases nationwide, the CDC and other government officials have urged all Americans to stay home for Thanksgiving.

California governor Gavin Newsom has placed 41 of California’s 58 counties into the strictest lockdown restrictions amid rising infections in the Golden State.

The restrictions see shops operating at a reduced capacity of 25 per cent, while pubs are shut and working from home is recommended.

A 10pm curfew has come into force in Iowa, while indoor gatherings of all sizes have been banned in Philadelphia – the sixth most populous city in the US.

Despite the tightening of restrictions, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon reassured worried shoppers, Bloomberg reports.

“We’re going to be able to respond in this instance better than we did in the first half of the year, although we’re still — as a total supply chain — stressed in some places,” he said.

Mark Schiller, CEO of Hain Celestrial Group, said the company was “far better” prepared for panic-buying episodes this autumn, Bloomberg reports.

“We have about 50 million more dollars of inventory on hand, of all the things that have the longest supply chain and the least amount of backups,” he said.

‘If 2020 was toilet paper’, said one Twitter user

One user joked that they should start selling toilet roll amid the shortages

The shelves in this Target store in Los Angeles were almost empty

A sad-looking shelf at a Target store in Illinois