Drone Captures South Koreans Form Long Queues Outside E-Mart Store For Face Masks In Daegu

With South Korea on red alert due to Covid-19, it is no wonder that citizens are wiping shelves clean at supermarkets, and it’s not just for groceries.

A queue to buy masks formed outside an E-Mart store in Daegu, one of the epicentres of local transmissions in the country.

According to NBC News, E-mart supermarkets in the region started selling 1.41 million face masks for half price on Monday (24 Feb).

Drone footage released by international news reports like The Guardian and BBC shows hundreds of South Koreans forming a queue to buy the face masks.

Let’s take a closer look at the situation.

Hundreds of South Koreans form long queues over face masks

The video shows a line of people so long that it rounded two corners of the building. Here is presumably where the queue starts.

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The camera then pans sidewards to show the shocking length of the queue.

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Just when you expected the queue to end, it doesn’t. The queue stretches down the street so far that it spills over to the adjacent building.

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There is literally no end in sight.

How South Korea is managing supply of masks

Before the rapid spread of Covid-19 in South Korea, many Chinese people were buying Korean masks at high prices. according to Korean news site Yonhapnews.

However, now that South Korea is right in the centre of the epidemic, citizens are having a hard time obtaining masks for themselves and their families.

Shelves once filled with masks were empty in a convenience store on 25 Feb
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To help cope with increasing demand, E-Mart started selling masks at half price.

Meanwhile, the country’s post service Korea Post is also contributing to help citizens. They announced on 25 Feb that they are planning to sell masks through the post office shopping homepage soon.

Another Korean news site MTN reports that in order to allow as many citizens to buy masks as possible, members of the post office shopping site can only buy 1 set of masks per week.

Singapore not alone in panic over Covid-19

Outside of China, South Korea has one of the highest number of confirmed Covid-19 cases, and President Moon Jae-in placed the country under red alert – the highest alert level – on Sunday.

The reactions of South Koreans to this development were not unlike Singaporeans, as they cleared shelves of food and medical supplies to protect themselves from the spread of the virus in this global pandemic.

Both the Singaporean and South Korean governments have also imposed travelling restrictions to better manage the spread of the virus.

Hopefully, these measures can help curb the spread of Covid-19 and put an end to this pandemic.

Also read:

South Korea Raises Covid-19 Alert Level To “Highest”, MOH Warns Against Travel To Daegu & Cheongdo

South Koreans Are Panic Buying After Shocking Spike In Covid-19 Cases, Supermarkets In Daegu Wiped Clean

Featured image adapted from The Guardian on YouTube.