Waiting until the last minute is not advised for Y2K suppliesgreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
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WAITING UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE IS NOT ADVISED FOR Y2K SUPPLIES
By Raoul V. Mowatt
Tribune Staff Writer
December 09, 1999
Attention Chicagoland shoppers: It's probably not a good idea to risk getting caught up in a last-minute run for groceries just before the turn of the millennium.
That was the message Wednesday from city and retail officials who warned residents to avoid procrastinating when it comes to buying bottled water, milk and other key supplies in anticipation of possible problems from the Y2K computer glitch.
"If everyone waits until the week between Christmas and New Year's to try to stock up on a couple days of food or water or even cash, the fact is . . . we might have minor disruptions," said Barrett Murphy, co-manager of the city's Y2K project.
"The stores don't stock enough for everybody in the city to shop at once," he said.
He and store officials were speaking at a press conference at a North Side 7-Eleven. They said that when it comes to Y2K, people have little to fear but fear itself.
Experts have warned computers could crash or lose data by misreading 2000 as 1900. But businesses and government agencies have been devoting massive resources to the problem, and representatives from the stores said they are no exception.
"We have taken steps to ensure our systems and our suppliers' systems are Y2K ready, and our stores will be in stock of the items we know our customers want," said Elaine Wrinkle of 7-Eleven.
Murphy repeated throughout the press conference that Chicagoans should prepare for Y2K as if it were a winter storm.
They should have on hand several days' worth of canned goods, bottled water and any other essentials. They should have a battery-powered flashlight. They should get any errands out of the way early.
"Y2K is not an issue to panic over," Murphy added. "It's just a good reason to prepare."
Through students at public and parochial schools, city officials have distributed a million brochures offering Y2K tips. In coming weeks, it plans to pass out another 570,000 at grocery and convenience stores.
Seven chains are joining in the effort: Jewel/Osco, Dominick's, Cub Foods, Aldi, Kmart, Moo & Oink and 7-Eleven.
Andrea Brands, a Dominick's spokeswoman, said retailers can draw experiences with dealing with floods earthquakes and hurricanes to prepare for Y2K.
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