STORES have been stripped of face mask stocks within hours of Premier Daniel Andrews announcing new COVID-19 restrictions across regional Victoria from Sunday night.
Chemist Warehouse Mildura managing partner Eric Oguzkaya said that there was a queue out the door and down the street at his Langtree Avenue store, as people sought to secure a stock of masks.
“Melbourne has been experiencing this for a while now, and so our parent store has plenty of supplies, there is just the logistics of getting those stocks to Mildura,” he said.
“The truck has already left Melbourne, and so we will have news stocks shortly, and they are assuring us that we will have daily deliveries.”
Mr Oguzkaya said that community was going to have to get used to this as a way of life for a period of time.
“This something that we are all going to need to embrace,” he said.
“What compounds the issue is the 1.5-metre social distancing rule, normally this store can hold a large number of people, but we are restricted in how many can be in here at one time.
“That’s a reminder to people that even though they may have a mask on, it’s still necessary to social distance.
“The fact is that we need to get on board. Forget about the ‘I’ in this, it’s the ‘we’. We need to do this and help each other out to stay safe.
“Personally I find it hard to wear, we have been wearing them all week in the store and it’s something that I and my staff are having to get used to.”
Masks may be purchased in packs of 10 for around $10 or bulk packs of 50, two of which can be bought for $70.
“Hopefully in the coming weeks we will also be accessing the Government stocks, which will be available for the vulnerable patients, and there will be a channel opened to allow for that distribution,” Mr Oguzkaya said.