North Georgians flood grocery stores ahead of shelter-in-place order


CATOOSA COUNTY, Ga. (WDEF) — Georgia residents had one day to prepare for Governor Brian Kemp’s shelter-in-place order — which will go into affect Friday, April 3. Thursday, hundreds of North Georgians stocked up on supplies, creating huge rushes at grocery stores and gas stations.

“I think it’s a little crazy,” Ashley Keith said.

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Lines wrapped around at Costco. Parking lots packed with customers. Cars waited two and three deep at gas stations. — all this as Georgians prepare to shelter-in-place beginning Friday.

“We can’t get out tomorrow unless we have a letter from where we work or whatever,” Brenda Ouzts said. “Either that or going to the grocery store or the emergency room. So it just seemed like the sensible thing to do to stock up.”

Ouzts isn’t the only one with that idea.

“I honestly didn’t expect it to be this busy,” Keith said.

“Oh, it blew my mind. It’s like amazing that the lines are this long to get in,” Ouzts said.

“We stood there for 30 minutes or more on the inside line,” Misty Lobrano said.

“It bothers me a little bit that people are going in and wiping out shelves and leaving empty shelves for other people that can’t get what they need,” Tommy Madaris said.

At noon Thursday, Costco in Fort Oglethorpe was already out of certain cleaning supplies and toilet paper. The store has put limitations on how much of high demand products customers are able to buy.

“I think people need to calm down,” Lobrano said. “Yeah, be prepared, but don’t freak out. There’s no reason to freak out. As long as we all remain calm, we’ll all be okay.”

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp’s shelter-in-place order will continue through Monday, April 13.

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Angela joined the News 12 team in November of 2017 as the weekend sports anchor and reporter. Angela is a proud member of an Army family, which means she has hometowns all over the Eastern Seaboard. Most recently, she calls Peachtree City, Georgia, home, where she graduated from Trinity Christian School and spent her free time driving her purple golf cart. She then headed to Milledgeville, Georgia, to attend Georgia College and State University. A proud Bobcat, Angela graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Mass Communication and represented her December 2016 class as one of three valedictorians. Angela comes to the Scenic City from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where she worked at the NBC affiliate, WMBF News. Before the big move, she worked as Georgia College's Sports Information Assistant, which let her get paid to be the Bobcats' biggest fan. It all started in Savannah, Georgia, though, where she interned for SAV's number one station, WTOC. When she's not working, you can find Angela watching the New York Giants, Rangers or basically any other game that's on. She also loves traveling, hiking and exploring new places, all with her camera in hand. If you have any story ideas, big or small, feel free to reach out to her on Facebook and Twitter, or email her at"