Mayor Sylvester Turner tweeted “the world is not coming to an end” in an effort to prevent Houstonians from panic buying in response to the spread of coronavirus, but the plea fell on deaf ears as shelves on grocery stores throughout the state were emptied.

“The world is not coming to an end. But if it is all that bottle water and toilet paper you are buying will not get used,” Turner tweeted.

Nobody appeared to be listening as panic buying gripped the state in response to heightened fears that the COVID-19 outbreak could lead to quarantines and people having to self-isolate for weeks.

“Trips to several greater Houston area grocery stores Thursday revealed completely empty shelves in certain sections of the store while shopping carts became a prized acquisition,” reports the Houston Press.

According to reports, people were not “panicking” but were simply bulk buying products in preparation for having to hunker down, similar to how they would before a major hurricane.

Tinned goods, water, toilet roll, paper towels and diapers were proven to be the most in-demand products as checkout lines were packed.

“We were doing fine till last night when everyone started coming in,” one employee said. “It’s been like this all day.”

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