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#BlackFriday: Woman hurt during stampede in Durban mall

The Black Friday shopping craze has taken South Africa by storm, with thousands of shoppers enduring long queues for massive discounts.

South Africans take advantage of Black Friday deals. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Paramedics say a woman has been injured at the Pavilion Shopping Centre in Durban.

Reports says she was treated, after she sustained injuries to her shoulder, during a stampede at the mall.

The Black Friday shopping craze has taken South Africa by storm, with thousands of shoppers enduring long queues for massive discounts.

ER24 spokesperson Russel Meiring says: “ER24 paramedics responded to the scene, along with another service. The woman was treated by paramedics after injuring her shoulder while shopping. The cause of this incident is not exactly known at the moment. An investigation will be launched by the mall management.”

Meanwhile, economists say Black Friday shopping bonanza is not likely to have a significant impact on the economy other than a once-off boost in sales.

Economists say the huge demand to join in on Friday's festivities shows that consumers are desperate for lower prices, and are still feeling the lagging effect from the drought.

ETM Analytics’ Jana van de Venter says the fact that retailers are able to sell items at a discounted price, doesn't mean they can ordinarily afford to do so.

“We are not of the view that retailers are charging prices which are extensively high. Fundamental analysis already show that retailers are already squeezing the margins, given the weak consumption demand environment.”

Argon Asset Management's Thabi Leoka says end-of-year retail sales are not new.

“Leading up to the Christmas season and also January because of schools.”

Online marketing agency The Principality has also noted that conversation around Black Friday on social media has tripled since last year, suggesting a growing interest on the shopping event. But, major retailers are already struggling to keep up with the high demand.

LISTEN: How to cash in on Black Friday fever (without shedding tears later)

WATCH: Black Friday hits SA

In Cape Town, shoppers say it’s been a manic experience.

“The shops seemed to have been not prepared because when we arrived at the mall there were no baskets.”

One shopper expressed her dissatisfaction over Black Friday: “I really don’t like it, the people are rude. I won’t come again.”

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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