Manchester

'Black Friday' sales 'chaos': Tesco criticised by GMP chief constable

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Media captionA Tesco shop in Trafford, Greater Manchester, closed shortly after footage was filmed showing disruption as people queued

Greater Manchester's chief constable has accused Tesco of failing to prepare properly for the "Black Friday" sales after trouble erupted at seven stores.

Sir Peter Fahy said his officers had to deal with crushing and disorder at the supermarkets as large crowds gathered.

He described the chaotic scenes, in which three arrests were made, as "totally predictable" and claimed Tesco had not arranged sufficient security.

Tesco said it was "extremely grateful" to police for dealing with the crowds.

A man was arrested in Irlam for threatening to "smash" a staff member's "face in".

Another man, 42, allegedly punched a fellow customer in Burnage while trying to grab a television from him.

And a third man, 45, was arrested at Tesco's Hattersley store for a public order offence.

Image copyright Twitter

A woman suffered minor injuries when a falling television set hit her in Tesco's Stretford store, which was one of three closed by police.

Sir Peter tweeted: "Very disappointing that major stores did not learn lessons from last year - our officers have enough to do already."

In a statement, he said the incidents were "totally predictable" and that he was "disappointed stores did not have sufficient security staff on duty".

Greater Manchester's most senior policeman said it led to his officers having to deal with incidents in the early hours "when police resources are already stretched".

He added: "Across Greater Manchester large supermarkets already make significant demands on policing through calls to shoplifting, anti-social behaviour and thefts of fuel from their petrol stations - much of which is preventable.

"We just ask these stores to work with us to reduce the demands on policing and reduce the risks of disorder and crime."

In a statement, Tesco said: "In the interest of customer safety a small number of stores in Greater Manchester contacted police last night to help control crowds safely.

"We are extremely grateful to Greater Manchester Police for their support and the stores are now trading normally."

Tesco's 24-hour stores began the sales a minute after midnight.

Originating in the United States, Black Friday has become a major UK shopping day in recent years.

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