Tropical Storm Delta made Cayman’s residents flock Fosters, Hurleys and Kirks supermarket on Monday as panic buying fever struck. At Fosters, Countryside, the traffic backed and there was nowhere to park at 8 am. There were long lines of people with blue shopping carts stretching right stretching down the isles, just like a rerun of the “bad old days,” of the Great Cayman Covid-19 Toilet Paper Shortage.
“I wasn’t expecting this at all. This is crazy,” one shopper, Althea, said. “I had only come in here to buy the usual things I buy on a Monday Morning and I find they are all stocking up on items.” Carts were piled high, not only with more ordinary groceries than usual, but with bottled water, and other hurricane supplies like torches, batteries, disinfectant, and, yes, toilet paper too.
Tropical Storm Delta was still about 250 miles away from Grand Cayman when the panic-buying fever started, but the official tropical storm warning that went out over the weekend caused all the schools to be shut for Monday and Tuesday at least, and many government offices closed too as a precaution. People were being advised to work from home, if possible. On Monday average wind speeds of the storm were reported at 40 mph, although in Grand Cayman early on Monday morning the sun was shining and there was still virtually no wind at all. But Customs and Border Control closed for the afternoon, in anticipation of worsening conditions, and tropical storm conditions that would hit on Monday Night, affecting all three Cayman Islands, with big waves impacting coastal areas.