Once Governor Henry McMaster declared a state of emergency, South Carolina's price gouging law kicked in.
As we wait to see where Hurricane Florence make landfall, S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson issued a statement saying, "We can expect normal price increases, but we may see businesses and individuals looking to unfairly take advantage of the situation through price gouging of food, gasoline, lodging, and other commodities as defined by the statute."
The statement went on to say, "By our law, that's a criminal violation and an unfair trade practice."
According to the Attorney General's office, price gougers can be charged for excessive pricing, which is a misdemeanor offense punishable with a $1,000 fine and/or 30 days in jail.
So, what should you do if you believe you are a victim of price gouging: The AG's office suggests you document and, if possible, take pictures of:
the name and address of the business
the date and time the price was spotted
the price you paid versus other prices being charged nearby