Australian toilet-paper truck catches fire, sparking supply worries amid coronavirus panic

A semi-trailer carrying hundreds of rolls of toilet paper burst into flames in Australia – ramping up anxiety about shortages amid the coronavirus outbreak Down Under.

The truck caught fire Wednesday night on the Gateway Bridge in Brisbane, Australia’s third-largest city, according to

The driver managed to escape unharmed.

“This is not overly common, particularly around the city areas, but the main thing is no one got hurt tonight and we’ve been able to save quite a lot of toilet paper,” fire official Justin Francis told the outlet.

“There was quite an interesting fuel load on this particular vehicle as we believe toilet paper is quite precious at the moment, so we’ve been able to save half the load on this particular truck,” he added.

The accident grabbed nationwide headlines amid panic buying of toilet paper by consumers worried about supplies, leading supermarket chains Woolworths and Coles to impose limits on how much people can buy.

People have been urged not to stockpile toilet paper and Prime Minister Scott Morrison has tried to allay consumers’ worries, according to Reuters.

On Thursday, Australia’s chief medical officer Brendan Murphy said: “There is no reason to denude the shelves of lavatory paper in the supermarkets.”

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