Coronavirus panic as two women fight over toilet paper in supermarket brawl

Panic-buying over coronavirus triggered a brawl in a supermarket as two women were filmed fighting over toilet paper.

Police have charged two women in Australia over the violence in a store in Chullora, southwest Sydney.

Video of the incident was widely shared online after police compared the panic-buying to something out of the post-apocalyptic film Mad Max.

The clip showed a group of women pushing, yelling and fighting over a jumbo packet of toilet paper amid the panic over COVID-19.

Onlookers were heard shouting at the trio to stop fighting before supermarket staff stepped in to help.

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In the video, one woman is seen pulling the hair of another during the heated altercation.

She yells: "I just want one packet."

The other woman, pushing a trolley packed with toilet paper, replies: "No, not one packet," before staff step in.

Police spoke to a 49-year-old woman at the Chullora Woolworths supermarket who had allegedly been assaulted in the brawl at around 7am.

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Australia, which has seen 77 cases of coronavirus and three deaths, has been particularly affected by panic-buying of supplies — especially toilet paper.

The hashtag "toiletpaperpanic" was trending on Twitter earlier this week.

Other essentials including canned goods, pasta, hand sanitiser and rice have also become prized possessions.

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Police have warned people not to give in to the panic.

"We just ask that people don't panic like this when they go out shopping," New South Wales state police acting inspector Andrew New said.

"It's just bad behaviour by people that are panicking and there is just no need for any of that panic because there are sufficient supplies."

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"There is no need for it. It's not the Thunderdome, it's not Mad Max, we don't need to do that.

"Violence of this nature will not be tolerated and anyone involved in this behaviour may be committing an offence and find themselves before the court.

"There is no need for people to go out and panic buy at supermarkets, paracetamol and canned food or toilet paper."

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Reports say two women, aged 23 and 60, from the Bankstown area of the city have been issued court attendance notices for affray and are due before Sydney's Bankstown Local Court on April 28.

A Woolworths spokeswoman told the supermarket "will not tolerate violence of any kind from our customers in our stores".

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