The military has been deployed to help control the situation, but calls for calm have done little to quell the violence.
Police Minister Bheki Cele said that if the looting continued, there was a risk areas could run out of basic goods.
One Durban resident told Express.co.uk he was struggling to find bread and milk, and that his family had barricaded themselves in their houses.
He said there was “a lot of community policing going on which is good in some ways but also worrying”, adding: “Hockey sticks seem to be the main weapon of choice, but many people with shotguns and sidearms.
“It is a disaster waiting to happen as there seems to be some who believe they can restrict access to certain roads and at some point, somebody is going to take umbrage and there will be an incident.”