Rush for supplies keeps tills ticking over

Many in Gisborne went into stockpile mode.

Many in Gisborne went into stockpile mode.

POWERCUT: Warehouse staff member Aimee Morrison closes the doors to the public. But a generator driven down from Auckland meant the store was back up and running on Tuesday at 6.30am and stayed open until midnight. It was back to business as normal today.

THE LACK of power sent many people in Gisborne into stockpile mode, with best-selling items being candles, water, batteries and coffee.

Pak’nSave owner Ewan Atherton said the supermarket sold more than 1000 coffees yesterday — five times more than normal — and he credited Pak’n Save barista Meliti for making all the hot drinks for patient customers.

Candles sold out in the first half-hour of the power cut on Monday and there was also a run on canned food, batteries and water.

Buying habits changed on Tuesday, Mr Atherton said.

“Yesterday we sold an enormous amount of hot chicken, fresh salads and buns because people weren’t buying ice cream or chilled products because they had no freezers or fridges (in operation) to take them home to.”

Mr Atherton said the communication from Eastland Group, Civil Defence and police was “outstanding”.

“We knew we had a huge problem straight away so I got on the phone and ordered a generator from Tauranga as soon as I knew what was going on.”

Mr Atherton was pleased with how his staff reacted, with people changing their rostered hours so the store could stay open.

“It was a real focus for delivering to the community.”

Queues at Gisborne petrol stations sent many motorists up the Coast to Tolaga Bay as the drive there was shorter than some of the waiting times in town.

Uawa Garage owner Leanne Kuru said the first day of the power outage on Monday was huge.

“We managed to stay open and could do cash sales.

“When we heard it might be a couple of days, we called our electrician and got him to hardwire our generator into our power so we had petrol, diesel and eftpos up and running.

“We would have had about 20 logging trucks that sucked our diesel dry the first day and then we got another truckload through on Monday, so we were able to continue to fuel vehicles yesterday.

“Customers came from up the Coast, with so many from Gisborne because of the queues there.

“But we coped, we didn’t stress. There wasn’t much we could do and everybody was good about it. I’d like to thank Eastland Network for what they did in the time they did it in. It was fantastic.

“We know it was a big job. Nova Energy were also sending texts to my phone, updates every three hours about the stages that Eastland Network were up to, which I thought ‘flipping excellent’ as we had no radio up here.”

The Warehouse store manager Tracy Crago said popular items were gas cookers, water, torches, candles, solar showers and butane gas canisters.

“We opened at 6.30am yesterday to make these things available to the public and we were open until midnight.”

The Warehouse operated on a generator that was driven down from Auckland.

THE LACK of power sent many people in Gisborne into stockpile mode, with best-selling items being candles, water, batteries and coffee.

Pak’nSave owner Ewan Atherton said the supermarket sold more than 1000 coffees yesterday — five times more than normal — and he credited Pak’n Save barista Meliti for making all the hot drinks for patient customers.

Candles sold out in the first half-hour of the power cut on Monday and there was also a run on canned food, batteries and water.

Buying habits changed on Tuesday, Mr Atherton said.

“Yesterday we sold an enormous amount of hot chicken, fresh salads and buns because people weren’t buying ice cream or chilled products because they had no freezers or fridges (in operation) to take them home to.”

Mr Atherton said the communication from Eastland Group, Civil Defence and police was “outstanding”.

“We knew we had a huge problem straight away so I got on the phone and ordered a generator from Tauranga as soon as I knew what was going on.”

Mr Atherton was pleased with how his staff reacted, with people changing their rostered hours so the store could stay open.

“It was a real focus for delivering to the community.”

Queues at Gisborne petrol stations sent many motorists up the Coast to Tolaga Bay as the drive there was shorter than some of the waiting times in town.

Uawa Garage owner Leanne Kuru said the first day of the power outage on Monday was huge.

“We managed to stay open and could do cash sales.

“When we heard it might be a couple of days, we called our electrician and got him to hardwire our generator into our power so we had petrol, diesel and eftpos up and running.

“We would have had about 20 logging trucks that sucked our diesel dry the first day and then we got another truckload through on Monday, so we were able to continue to fuel vehicles yesterday.

“Customers came from up the Coast, with so many from Gisborne because of the queues there.

“But we coped, we didn’t stress. There wasn’t much we could do and everybody was good about it. I’d like to thank Eastland Network for what they did in the time they did it in. It was fantastic.

“We know it was a big job. Nova Energy were also sending texts to my phone, updates every three hours about the stages that Eastland Network were up to, which I thought ‘flipping excellent’ as we had no radio up here.”

The Warehouse store manager Tracy Crago said popular items were gas cookers, water, torches, candles, solar showers and butane gas canisters.

“We opened at 6.30am yesterday to make these things available to the public and we were open until midnight.”

The Warehouse operated on a generator that was driven down from Auckland.

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