Cops to coronavirus crowds: Don't call 911 if you're out of toilet paper

Coronavirus shoppers may have stripped the shelves, but that's still not a police emergency, folks.

Gael Fashingbauer Cooper
CNET freelancer Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
Gael Fashingbauer Cooper

Toilet paper has become a hot commodity in the days of the coronavirus outbreak, with shelves in many grocery stores empty around the nation, despite reassurances that the supply is not affected. But a police department in Oregon has a message: The cops are not your bathroom tissue supply chain.

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"It's hard to believe that we even have to post this," the Newport , Oregon Police Department posted on Facebook on Saturday. "Do not call 911 just because you ran out of toilet paper. You will survive without our assistance."

It’s hard to believe that we even have to post this. Do not call 9-1-1 just because you ran out of toilet paper. You...

Posted by Newport Oregon Police Department on Saturday, March 14, 2020

The PD went on to deliver a history lesson about TP, suggesting alternatives from generations past, ranging from corncobs (ow) to rope soaked in salt (what?) to grocery receipts and catalog pages.

"Be resourceful. Be patient," the post continues. "This too shall pass. Just don't call 911. We cannot bring you toilet paper."

Facebook readers seemed to appreciate the post for the bit of levity it brought to a serious message. "Brilliant writing," one wrote. "I'd shake your hand, but that's ill advised. How about a toe tap?"

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