Doomsday preppers gathering supplies in case world ‘ends’ Friday

Ancient Mayan prophecy driving sales

SAN ANTONIO - According to some believers of ancient prophecy, the world will come to a cataclysmic end on Friday.

The doomsday scenario stems from the Mayan long count calendar which supposedly ends on December 21, 2012.

While many people think the world will keep on spinning, some believers are preparing for the worst.

David Gardiner owns a military surplus store in Converse. He said business has been booming in recent weeks.

"The sales have quadrupled. We can't keep nothing in stock," said Gardiner, owner of Armed Forces Supply. "Our MRE's are through the roof, gas masks are out the roof, and the closer we're getting to Friday it's just crazy right now."

From medical supplies in a ready-to-go bag for $250 to chemical lights, gas masks and meals ready to eat, no expense is too much when the end is nigh.

"It's all walks of life pretty much when it comes to that," Gardiner said referring to his customers. "Basically people just want to be reassured that they're ready in case of any type of event."

Gardiner has seen fear drive sales before. It started with the Y2K threat in 1999 and then the 9/11 attacks. He said sales spiked again during the SARS outbreak in 2003 and the swine flu scare of 2009.

Now it's the Mayan calendar prophecy and popular T.V. shows about doomsday preppers that are bringing people into his store and driving his website sales.

"We have preppers since the shows came out that have pretty much quit their job and are just all full blown out for what's coming this Friday," Gardiner said. "It's hard keeping most of our items in stock, especially MRE's and gas masks."

Gardiner is pretty confident the sun will rise Saturday but he isn't judging the believers.

"I don't believe that there's going to be any type of end of the world scenario that will happen," Gardiner said. "There's nothing wrong with keeping your family safe and being prepared for any type of scenario that could happen. It's better to be safe than sorry."

For a list of recent stories Tim Gerber has done, click here.


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