The ‘Beast from the East’ which has gripped the country this week has caused a sense of panic and chaos in The Avondhu readership area.
Shelves across the country have been stripped bare as people prepared for the much publicised snow storm since 1982.
Up until lunchtime on Wednesday and apart from one prolonged snow shower, Fermoy, Mitchelstown and surrounding areas were basking in glorious sunshine but the fear of the looming 'beast' was still very much on people’s minds as a red alert weather warning was issued by Met Eireann for Thursday for the whole of Munster.
A fever of fear hit the area and people have been stocking up on essentials like fuel and fresh produce just in case the beast should keep roaring for longer than predicted.
“We’re absolutely flat out. We’ve never been as busy,” Pa Dalton of PD Fuels in Mitchelstown told The Avondhu on Wednesday. Despite the weather warnings, Pa and his gang plan on continuing deliveries as normal over the coming days. “We will be out, there’s no doubt about it,” said Pa.
Mill Fuels, Rathcormac gave the same promise. “If I’ve to put on chains, I’ll be on the road. This isn’t going to stop us. We’ll be doing our normal run,” they assured. Mill Fuels advised that people leave their heating on in an effort to prevent pipes bursting. “It’s absolutely crazy busy,” they said. “It’s like Armageddon!”
Heating oil distributors were also very busy doing deliveries on Wednesday. “We’ll be delivering up until weather permits,” a spokesperson for Amber Oil said.
We certainly need fuel to keep us warm but we need food to keep our bodies fuelled during the cold days ahead.
Staff at Riordan’s Supervalu have been run off their feet to try to keep the shelves stocked and to keep the queues of customers flowing through the checkouts.
“It’s pretty epic alright,” said Michael Riordan. “We’ve had nearly weekend trades Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. We’re nearly cleaned out of fresh produce.”
People have been filling their trolleys to the brim over the past few days with bread and milk being the number one items going into everyone's basket. Michael said that sausages and fresh meat were also pratically cleared from their shelves and there was also a surge in the sales of bottled water.
“We’ve no access to extra stocks,” Michael explained, saying "the orders for deliveries go in about a week ahead so it is not possible to order next day deliveries to supply the increased demand."
As the saying goes, ‘It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good’, as people stocked up in preparation for the Russian blizzard.
Stay safe out there and watch out for your elderly neighbours!