SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif — Examples of price gouging have been reported all across California, including locally in San Diego. 

What is price gouging?

Price gouging is the practice of raising the price of something that’s in demand to an unreasonable level. There are laws in the state of California against this practice.

You can report suspected price gouging to the District Attorney’s Consumer Protection Unit at (619) 531-3507 or to the California Attorney General’s Office.

To share suspected coronavirus-related scams or price gouging with News 8, take a picture of the product and its price and submit it along with your contact information and a short description or link to where it’s taking place.

California is one of 34 states that have at least some sort of law against price gouging according to the website FindLaw. But there are 16 states that have no statute specifically outlawing price gouging. 

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NEWS 8 joined forces with The San Diego Foundation to raise IMMEDIATE, EMERGENCY FUNDS for our most vulnerable neighbors in need. Here is how you can help. 

BACKGROUND:

According to the CDC, coronavirus (COVID-19) is a family of viruses that is spreadable from person to person. Coronavirus is believed to have been first detected in a seafood market in Wuhan, China in December 2019. If someone is sick with coronavirus, the symptoms they may show include mild to severe respiratory illness, cough, and difficulty breathing. 

Currently, there is no vaccine, however, the CDC suggests the following precautions, along with any other respiratory illness: 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. 

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. 

  • Stay home when you are sick. 

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. 

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. 

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds. 

The CDC also says facemasks should only be used by people who show symptoms of the virus. If you’re not sick, you do not have to wear a facemask.