Wintry conditions send locals in search of cold weather supplies on New Year's Day

(WVUE) - The wintry weather that arrived with 2018 had people bundled up and searching for ways to avoid plumbing headaches later.

But at some area home improvement stores the rush on cold weather supplies left some shelves empty.

"I love it, just wish that I didn't have to do this on my day off," said Kevin Frye, as he left Home Depot in Covington.

It was a picture-perfect start to the New Year, but from the South Shore to the North Shore, but the first day 2018 involved a trip to stores like Lowe's and Home Depot.

At the Lowe's stores on Veterans Memorial Boulevard in Metairie, shelves that earlier were filled with foam insulation for outdoor pipes were completely empty by mid-afternoon.

"The foam wraps that went around the pipes," said Lowe's customer Meb Cefalu as she approached the aisle.

She was not surprised that what she came looking for was not available.

"No, not really because I tried the hardware story before and they didn't have any," continued Cefalu.

"Ah, completely. Definitely had a run on the foam for the pipes," said customer Greg Muro.

While the store was totally out of the foam insulation for pipes, the Metairie Lowe's had lots of faucet socks and items to seal windows.

"Nothing else left, wow.  One, two,, three, and I'm going to need two more for that one," said Muro has he filled his basket with the faucet socks.

He owns apartments.

"I'll just take the whole box," he said.

A worker quickly opened more boxes of the faucet socks for customers.

Back in Covington some customers found a similar situation in terms of some inventory.

"I bought some lamps and outdoor sockets.  I had a brass fitting in my well that froze, so I got to figure out how to defrost it and hopefully that's my only problem," said John Monroe, a Home Depot customer.

Customers who spoke to FOX 8 said they were forced to improvise due to the lack of available items.

"Some packaging materials because they had sold out of the foam wrap for the pipes, so and then got to fix busted pipe," said Frye.

"They're all out of portable lights, they're all out of insulation for pipes, so they told me people have been buying bubble wrap and rags and stuff," Monroe stated.

And there are mixed reviews on the winter conditions.

"I love it if it didn't make my pipes freeze," said Monroe.

"Gotta go to my garden and pick all the broccoli and all the vegetables otherwise it's going to go bad on me," said Muro.

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