A shoe store’s supposed grand opening quickly became its grand closing after the 11.11 sale fiasco that brought authorities to the store to close it down due to numerous violations of the COVID-19 protocols and drawing at least 1,000 individuals to such a tiny location!
Dozens of people flocked to a shoe store on Sanson Road in Barangay Lahug, Cebu City on Wednesday morning for an 11.11 sale. It was supposed to be the highlight for the store’s scheduled grand opening.
Aiming to score shoes at cheap prices, dozens of people crowded outside the store as early as 7AM, getting themselves ready for the actual opening scheduled at 9AM.
As more people arrived outside the store, the queue got so long that it reached several blocks near the store. Moreover, it was soon obvious that controlling the big crowd will be a huge problem.
As pictures of the crowd quickly went viral on Facebook, officials from the city government arrived to stop the store’s opening, owing to several violations. Among these are absence of a permit and physical distancing.
Apparently, these people went to the store in hopes of availing their 11.11 opening sale of “3 for 998 super sale”. After all, who would want to miss buying what looked like branded shoes for that price?
But many pointed out that the items are certainly knockoffs. Moreover, fake or not, the sale is something worth losing your life for! Considering that there is still a pandemic going on, especially in Cebu City, mingling with so many people at this close distance is certainly pushing your luck!
Police have dispersed the crowd at the area and the store was not allowed to open. The city government also ordered the store’s indefinite closure for failing to control the crowd of buyers who disregarded social distancing protocols just to avail of the sale.
Later, the store manager announced that they will be limiting the customers to just 150 per day. They are also planning on moving the grand sale to a bigger venue, such as a gym. However, the grand opening might have to be pushed for a much later time after authorities discovered that the shoe store failed to secure a business permit from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
“This event is a warning to all other establishments that when they conduct sale, they should have a basic plan and coordinate first with the local police for the control of crowd,” warned Police Major Randy Caballes, the Cebu City Police Office Intelligence Branch chief.