SC price gouging law now in effect for Hurricane Irma
As products began to fly off shelves in South Carolina ahead of Hurricane Irma, Attorney General Alan Wilson put the state's price gouging law in effect.
The decision followed the State of Emergency declared by Gov. Henry McMaster and came at the same time as images were sent to our newsroom showing barren shelves in Lowcountry supermarkets.
“With the possibility that Hurricane Irma could make landfall in South Carolina, our people have already started making preparations. We can expect normal price increases, but we may see businesses and individuals looking to unfairly take advantage of the situation through price gouging of food, gasoline, lodging, and other commodities as defined by the statute. By our law, that’s a criminal violation and an unfair trade practice,” Wilson said.
The law is in effect for the next 15 days. Those charged with excessive pricing will face a $1,000 fine and/or 30 days in jail.
If you believe you may be the victim of price gouging, Wilson's office asks you to note the name, time, place and address of the business; note the price you paid and take photos of the business and price. You can email your notes, with your name and contact information to email@example.com. You can also call 803-737-3953 and leave a message if you believe you have witnessed a violation.