The official Christmas shopping season kickstarts with insane deals and discounts on black Friday. Customers know they won’t get these prices any other day, so the lines are long, and the struggle is real.
Black Friday shoppers sometimes get more than they bargained for, and they often become violent. And if you think this only happens in the US, you’re in for a surprise.
Here are ten black friday stampedes that show just how frightening shopping can be.
Shoppers trampled a Long Island Walmart employee in 2008.
On Black Friday morning of 2008, roughly 2,000 shoppers had gathered outside a Long Island Walmart. Some had even been waiting since Thursday morning to get their hands on the mouthwatering discounts.
But as soon as the doors opened, tragedy struck. Jdimytai Damour, the Walmart employee who opened the store that morning, was knocked down and trampled by the impatient shoppers.
Unfortunately, by the time help arrived, it was too late for Damour.
They also fought over TVs at a Texas Walmart in 2014.
Getting 50-inch television sets for a fraction of the usual price was a sweet deal that shoppers couldn’t pass up.
But the crowd far exceeded the limited stock at the Texas Walmart in 2014. Fights soon broke out as no one wanted to leave without securing a purchase.
The situation got so severe that some customers lay down on their chosen television sets to ward off competition.
One woman used pepper spray to grab the best Xbox deals for herself at an LA Walmart in 2011.
Would your quest to get discounts at the store cause you to wield dangerous weapons?
Even before the store workers would put down the boxes of game consoles, the scramble to grab them had begun.
Without hesitation, the woman sprayed the irritating chemical in the faces of other shoppers. Roughly 20 people, some of them kids, were injured in the incident.
Shoppers destroyed store doors and metal detectors to enter Urban Outfitters in 2011.
In 2011, the doors wouldn’t open fast enough for the crowd outside Urban Outfitters at the Thousand Oaks Mall in California.
They’d been waiting for long hours for a chance to get their hands on insane deals and wouldn’t let the next person beat them to it.
Once the doors cracked open, the people poured in. Determined to get through, they pushed through the half-open gate and crushed the metal detectors at the entrance.
Cops tackled a grandpa to the ground during Black Friday chaos at an Arizona Walmart in 2011.
In one store in Phoenix, Arizona, cops slammed a 54-year-old grandpa to the ground in front of his grandson. His crime was trying to pocket a video game.
Generally, security officers are on high alert for potential shoplifters during the Black Friday craze.
Although the victim’s family claimed he only tucked the game away to keep off other aggressive shoppers, he was arrested for shoplifting. He also got sutures for his injuries.
Off-duty cop puffed pepper spray to disperse rowdy crowd at a North Carolina Walmart in 2011.
If you hesitate even for a minute, the juicy Black Friday deal you want could disappear right before your eyes.
So you get why the crowd at the Kinston, North Carolina Walmart in 2011 couldn’t wait for the shelves to get stocked. The excited group reached out to grab items even before workers had a chance to arrange them.
The frustrated off-duty cop in charge of the store that day decided to go the unconventional route. He sprayed a puff of pepper spray in the air to restore order.
Using pepper spray to disperse the crowd wasn’t probably the best idea, as roughly 20 people were hurt.
BrandsMart shoppers trampled an older woman while forcing their way into the store in 2005.
The events during the Black Friday sale at a Florida BrandsMart in 2005 are a classic example of how brutal these sales can get. Buyers trooped in like a zombie horde, stopping for nothing, not even a fallen senior citizen.
The 73-year-old woman was out with her daughters fishing for deals on electronics. But too many people were pushing one another to get into the store.
In the middle of the struggle, the older woman was pushed to the ground, becoming trapped underneath the mob. She was eventually able to break free and get medical attention.
A North Buffalo man was crushed under a mob of shoppers at Target in 2010.
Once the doors to the stores open on Black Friday, shoppers swarm inside like it’s the end of the world. In a North Buffalo Target in 2010, this was the scene. Mammoth crowds struggled to squeeze in, each person eager to reach the shelves before the next.
Amid the chaos, one man fell and was trapped beneath the mad crowd. His agonizing screams could be heard from a distance. Unfortunately, this didn’t stop people from stepping over him on their way in.
Eventually, the man was rescued from the crowd and had to go to the hospital. Several other people were also trampled under the fevered horde of shoppers.
Tesco supermarkets in the UK faced riots in 2014.
The UK has had its fair share of chaotic Black Fridays, and 2014 was one of the worst years. The rush for discounted items quickly turned violent, and up to 15 Tesco stores called the police.
In one Tesco outlet in Wigan, a crowd had already gathered outside by Thursday evening. The police were promptly called after they began attempting to break down the store doors before the sales even began.
Another Tesco store in Manchester could only stay open for 36 minutes as rowdy customers were already getting in fist-fights over discounts.
Some workers received violent threats from angry customers, and one person in Stretford got a black eye.
Customers burst through glass doors to enter a store in Cape Town in 2017.
In 2017, hundreds of customers gathered outside a retail store in Cape Town, South Africa, waiting to be let in. But it just wasn’t time yet, and the store employees held the glass doors shut.
Despite several appeals from the workers to wait a moment, the crowd pushed on. Once the door was opened, even just a bit, they lunged forward.
In the struggle, the mob burst through the doors, smashing the glass, not even stopping to inspect the damage.
Shopping is usually hectic, but Black Friday is a different ball game.
Everyone’s out to get the best deals, but there just aren’t enough items. Fights break out, property gets destroyed, and even dangerous weapons get pulled out.
If you want to participate in the insanity that is Black Friday, just make sure you stay safe out there!