West Australians mocked for panic buying amid five-day Covid lockdown as woman was ‘bitten on neck’


A female shopper in Perth reportedly was ‘bitten on the neck’ and had her toilet paper stolen after Western Australia announced a draconian five-day Covid lockdown. 

The alleged assault came as West Australians were mocked for their panic buying after Premier Mark McGowan announced the extraordinary measures on Sunday.

The woman reportedly ‘bit a customer on the neck’ and stole her toilet paper in South Perth.

Locals are in a panic after the state recorded a single case of coronavirus on Sunday – the first in the community in 10 months.

Mr McGowan warned the infection is likely the mutant UK variant, which is up to 80 times more contagious.

After so long without any cases of community transmission, residents in eastern states have taken the opportunity to mock West Australians for not learning about the pitfalls of stockpiling. 

Panic buyers stripped shelves bare in West Australian grocery stores on Sunday and Monday

Panic buyers stripped shelves bare in West Australian grocery stores on Sunday and Monday

Western Australia's Premier Mark McGowan held an emergency press conference on Sunday after a man in his 20s tested positive to Covid

Western Australia’s Premier Mark McGowan held an emergency press conference on Sunday after a man in his 20s tested positive to Covid

‘A lot of people living in WA made fun of the other states when it came to panic buying. Now most of them are out doing the same thing. People never learn,’ one person said.

The infected West Australian is a man in his mid-20s who was working as a security guard at the Sheraton Four Points, where returned international travellers are being housed to complete their mandatory 14 day isolation.

He worked on the same floor as a traveller infected with the UK Covid strain for two 12 hour shifts on January 26th and 27th before developing symptoms on the 28th.  

The premier appealed for calm and asked the public to avoid overbuying at grocery stores ahead of the lockdown, but his pleas fell on deaf ears.

Coles had introduced buying limits on in-demand products and had to extend operational hours as customers queue around the block and fight for remaining stock.

Woolworths has also introduced limits on certain stock, while assuring customers they would not run out of supplies. 

Coles had introduced buying limits on in-demand products and had to extend operational hours as customers queue around the block and fight for remaining stock. The panic buying has prompted people from other states to mock West Australians

Coles had introduced buying limits on in-demand products and had to extend operational hours as customers queue around the block and fight for remaining stock. The panic buying has prompted people from other states to mock West Australians

Panic buyers flocked to grocery stores to prepare for the five day lockdown before Mr McGowan had even finished his conference

Panic buyers flocked to grocery stores to prepare for the five day lockdown before Mr McGowan had even finished his conference

Long queues are seen outside Coles in Maylands, one of the potential exposure sites, in Perth, on Sunday

Long queues are seen outside Coles in Maylands, one of the potential exposure sites, in Perth, on Sunday

In local community groups, rumours are rife that stores have descended into chaos as West Australians prepare for their first true fight against Covid in almost 10 months.

‘A lady got bitten on her neck and had her toilet paper stolen… The lady wen’t crazy,’ one woman claimed.

Police have not had any official complaints about the alleged incident, but Mr McGowan confirmed he had officers stationed at stores throughout the city.  

The popular premier locked down roughly 80 per cent of the state’s population on Sunday afternoon after learning of one new Covid case in the community.

Perth, Peel and the South West region all entered a five day lockdown from 6pm on Sunday lasting until at least 6pm Friday. 

He revealed he’d modeled the lockdown on Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszsczcuk’s Brisbane-wide lockdown last month.

Pictured: A shopper seen stocking up on toilet paper ahead of the lockdown

Pictured: A shopper seen stocking up on toilet paper ahead of the lockdown

Supermarkets were struggling to cope with the demand by Sunday afternoon as panic buyers rushed to stores to stock up for the lockdown

Supermarkets were struggling to cope with the demand by Sunday afternoon as panic buyers rushed to stores to stock up for the lockdown

Perth, Peel and the South West will enter a strict lockdown beginning 6pm on Sunday and lasting until Friday - impacting about 80 per cent of WA's population

Perth, Peel and the South West will enter a strict lockdown beginning 6pm on Sunday and lasting until Friday – impacting about 80 per cent of WA’s population

Queensland’s 72 hour lockdown came after a cleaner at a quarantine hotel contracted the highly infectious UK strain of Covid-19 at work.

She spread the infection to her partner, but there were no other known cases in the community.

Mr McGowan said he was following Ms Palaszczuk’s actions because she ‘crushed it’ and successfully avoided community spread.

After three days, lockdown was lifted and restrictions eased swiftly in the week to follow, with Ms Palaszczuk declaring the weekend an enormous success. 

‘Brisbane crushed it… And our measures are actually harsher. Hopefully, we can crush it in its tracks and get back to normal in coming weeks,’ Mr McGowan said. 

Panic buyers stripped shelves bare in West Australian grocery stores on Sunday and Monday

Panic buyers stripped shelves bare in West Australian grocery stores on Sunday and Monday

Residents are pictured queuing to get into a Coles supermarket on Sunday before the harsh five-day lockdown comes into effect

Residents are pictured queuing to get into a Coles supermarket on Sunday before the harsh five-day lockdown comes into effect

There are reports some have been forced to close their doors to give employees an opportunity to restock

Mr McGowan implored the public not to rush to stock up on supplies

There are reports some have been forced to close their doors to give employees an opportunity to restock. Mr McGowan implored the public not to rush to stock up on supplies

He said he ‘believed this was the right way’, in a veiled dig at NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, who did not lock down and beat Sydney’s outbreaks in a month using gentler methods.

But some residents fear Mr McGowan’s measures mightn’t be enough to stem the spread of Covid, particularly after seeing concerning pictures and videos of customers crammed into shopping centres with little regard for social distancing.

‘Rumours it will last beyond five days,’ one person said of the lockdown. ‘Less than a week isn’t enough. We need at least 14 days.’

‘Should be a lockdown the same length as incubation period,’ another added.

Mr McGowan warned life would likely not return to normal at 6pm on Friday, when lockdown is scheduled to end.

Instead, he said residents could expect a gradual easing of restrictions over the days and weeks to follow to ensure no cases of community transmission were missed.

LOCKDOWN RULES

Residents in Perth, Peel and the South West are required to stay home, except for the following four reasons:

– Shopping for essentials like groceries, medicine and necessary supplies

– Medical or health care needs including compassionate requirements and looking after the vulnerable

– Exercise, within their neighbourhood, but only with one other person and only for one hour per day

– Work, where you cannot work from home or remotely 

If you do leave home, for one of the four reasons you will be required to wear a mask at all times outside and if you need to work indoors, then wearing a mask in the workplace is also mandatory

Mask wearing on public transport is also mandatory 

This lockdown means the following businesses, venues and locations in the relevant regions need to close for the next five days:

– Pubs, bars and clubs

– Gyms and indoor sporting venues

– Playgrounds, skate parks and outdoor recreational facilities

– Cinemas, entertainment venues, and casinos

– Large religious gatherings and places of worship

– Libraries and cultural institutions

Restaurants and cafes will close, and provide takeaway service only

10 people can attend funerals, weddings are cancelled for the next five days

No visitors are permitted to your home, unless caring for someone vulnerable or an emergency

No visitors will be allowed in aged care homes, unless exceptional circumstances

No visitors to hospitals and/or disability facilities, unless exceptional circumstances

Elective surgery and procedures for categories 2 and 3 will be suspended from Tuesday. Category 1 and urgent category 2 surgery will continue   



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