GASTON COUNTY, NC (FOX 46) - Fox 46 charlotte caught Jeremy Hutchings buying the last two shovels at West End Hardware in Gastonia
"I’ve been to two different stores and this is the fourth phone call I made because of where I was at," said Jeremy Hutchings. "Lowes, Home Depot, and Southern States in Dallas are all out of snow shovels. Ice melt is getting hard to find."
Fox 46 Charlotte took the streets and spent the day searching stores to see who had snow shovels and ice melt in one place.
We started with the bigger stores, but both Home Depot and Lowes were cleaned out. They were sending people to other stores
"Some of the other stores have sent people our way and periodically we will send them their way to make sure everyone has what they need," Darrel Krentz said.
Darrel Krentz of West End Hardware tells FOX 46 Charlotte it's hard to predict what to have in stock when a winter storms comes in.
"We try to anticipate as best as we can, but it's so hard because you can't just order stuff overnight. We have to deal with our vendors, we get trucks in. It's takes a week to 10 days of anticipation to make sure you have everything in stock."
Even when they do order enough they may not even sell out for a storm.
"Stock up on a lot of this stuff and the storm doesn't hit, next thing you know, you got inventory for two, three, maybe four years on the shelves and that's not good either. So it's kind of a catch 22."
As we continued our search, hopes of finding both items anywhere were dwindling, until we got to Southern States in Dallas. We found both Ice melt and snow shovels but they only had one left.
“Like a lot of places, we just fell a little bit short."