Walmart will begin limiting number of shoppers in stores Saturday
BATON ROUGE – Walmart will begin limiting the number of customers in its stores this weekend.
The company said starting Saturday, April 4, stores will only allow shoppers equal to 20 percent of a store’s capacity. Customers will be admitted into the store on a “1-out-1-in basis,” meaning as someone leaves, another shopper can enter, a company spokesperson told WBRZ.
Twenty-percent of a store’s capacity is five customers for each 1,000 square feet of the facility. Using Google measurement tools, College Drive and Siegen Lane stores appear to be about 180,000-square-feet.
Walmart said to manage the restriction, associates will start a line at one, single-entry door – likely the grocery entrance – to organize customers.
“Associates and signage will remind customers of the importance of social distancing while they’re waiting to enter a store,” Walmart managers said in a statement.
Additionally, stores will undergo expanded cleaning and sanitization protocols, install plexiglass guards at checkout and pharmacies and add floor decals and signage identifying appropriate social distancing.
“We remain focused on taking measures for associates to protect themselves while supplying the community with essential items for their families,” a spokesperson said.
In the coming days, stores will also institute a one-way movement through aisles using floor markers and direction from associates.
“We expect this to help more customers avoid coming into close contact with others as they shop,” Walmart bosses said in the statement.
Walmart asked shoppers to shop alone or bring the fewest amount of people with them when visiting a store.
Most Walmart locations are open from 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and feature a senior shopping hour on Tuesdays for customers age 60 and older one hour before stores open. Pharmacies and vision centers remain open.
Stores are also checking workers' temperatures and asking basic questions about their health as they report for work during the coronavirus outbreak. Any associate with a temperature of 100 degrees or higher will be paid for reporting to work and asked to return home and seek medical treatment if necessary.
Employees will only be able to return to work if they are fever-free for three days.
The company says it will also make a masks and gloves available in the next two weeks to workers for as long as supplies will allow.