While dealing with the ongoing damages the Harvey phenomenon keeps causing on Texas, citizens also have no other choice than to pay extra for bottled water. Texas’s governor, Greg Abbott, condemned price gouging as an illegal and disgraceful practice coming from retailers. However, one of these businesses namely Best Buy apologized for making a mistake that was interpreted as predatory strategy.
Social Media Revealed that Best Buy Resorted to Price Gouging and Other Prefatory Practices in Times of Crisis
According to the Texas Attorney General, prices have been surging all over the state. Hotels have quadrupled their tariffs, fuel jumped to $10 per gallon, and water packs reached $99. Therefore, authorities registered numerous complaints in this respect which was more than 550 in numbers.
However, social media targeted Best Buy as the representative for this predatory price gouging. Several pictures were enough to pour fuel on the fire. A tweet revealed that some water packs in Houston were selling for $29. At the same time, people could purchase other cases of water for $49. As a consequence, this situation enraged a weeping country and backfired on Best Buy.
Best Buy Apologized yet the Texas Law Will Most Surely Penalize This Event
However, a Best Buy person commented on this case as being a mistake some employees made. The person explained that the company doesn’t have thorough protocols when it comes to water cases. That’s because they don’t usually sell them.
“As a company we are focused on helping, not hurting affected people. We’re sorry, and it won’t happen again.”
Therefore, the mistake came from the fact that the employees placed the price for a single bottle of water on top of a pack of water to inform people on the value of a single product. However, by proceeding this way even if it was a mistake, the company broke Texas law. The state preserved a penalty of at least $20,000 for every case of price gouging. In case the victim is aged 65 and above, the fine can reach $250,000.
The Attorney General of Texas, Ken Paxton, claimed that authorities are going to reinforce this legislature. While the seller has the final word when it comes to price changes, they also have the duty to protect citizens of prices higher than those of the market in times of crisis.
Image source: 1