Supply stores see surge

Saturday's storms sent many people to hardware and supply stores.


Tom O'Neal, the manager at Ace Hardware on Washington Road, said the Evans store saw increased activity Monday morning.

"It's been fairly busy this morning," he said. "So far, it's been a variety of small items. Everything from nails and screws to plywood.

"We've sold a good bit of bar and chain oil this morning for chain saws."

Mr. O'Neal said customer interest depends on damage.

"At our location, I'm not expecting it to be more than today and tomorrow," he said. "However, there are some folks that have some pretty significant damage that they've talked to us about. At our store in Thomson, there will probably be more for a longer period of time -- people buying tarps and that kind of thing."

Some people, he said, are buying to help out others.

"A lot of it, rather than home repairs, is people donating their time to go to Wrens or other places that have more significant damage than what we've seen here. They're getting what they need here to go take care of outlying areas."

At the Lowe's store in North Augusta, many people were coming in to take care of their own repairs.

"(Customers are) buying basic things such as tarps, generators and things for general repairs," manager Eric Proctor said.

"What we've seen so far is people trying to patch things up short-term, as opposed to long-term repair. ... We're trying to get some more supplies in to make sure that we have the things that people need, when they need it."

He said the North Augusta store had sold out of generators.

"That was the first and foremost thing that we sold out of. We've already got things in the works to get more in -- in case people need them. But hopefully people will have their power back on," Mr. Proctor said.

William Wren, a partner at Maner Builders Supply Co., said the Martinez store has not received an influx of customers asking to purchase supplies for home repairs. He said the store will deal primarily with contractors rather than individual homeowners.

"It's actually a little early for it to hit us," Mr. Wren said. "I fully expect it to be a big spike in a few weeks."

Reach LaTina Emerson at latina.emerson@