TESCO and Asda have introduced new measures to keep customers safe during the coronavirus outbreak, including floor markings to help people stand further apart and restricting the number of shoppers.
The two supermarkets follow other retailers who have put in place new rules to help stop the spread of the virus.
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Asda said that from today (March 25) it would introduce changes in its stores, including markers on the floor to help customers keep their distance, barriers, additional signage and announcements.
The supermarket has also confirmed that it will be limiting the number of customers in its stores when necessary, to ensure that people can stick to social distancing rules.
There will be extra members of staff at the front of stores to help maintain safe numbers inside, with hand sanitiser available for customers to use when entering and departing.
Asda has asked customers to only touch what they purchase and to use cashless payment methods wherever possible.
The supermarket is also installing perspex screens at its checkouts, pharmacies and service desks to help minimise contact and closing half of its ‘scan and go’ checkouts to help people maintain distance between one another.
Roger Burnley, chief executive and president of Asda, said: “It has never been more important for us to work together to keep our distance.
“I want you to know that everyone at Asda is working tirelessly to make sure you have the essentials your family needs and that you can shop in our stores safely if you need to visit us.
“We’re working hard to protect you and our colleagues – please help us to do so by following the guidelines in place.
“My colleagues in our stores are working under incredible pressure to serve you – and I am hugely grateful to them for their efforts.
“Please be kind to them when you visit us – we’re all in this together.”
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Tesco is taking similar measures to protect customers “from the moment they enter our carparks,” the retailer said.
Floor markings in car parks will help people to maintain safe distances when queuing, and where necessary, it will also limit the number of people coming into stores to make sure they don’t get too busy.
Hand sanitisers are also being placed around our stores for customers and staff to use, as well as extra cleaning products to wipe down trolleys and baskets.
In some stores, there will be directional floor markings and new signage, to encourage safe movement around the store.
And new floor markings will help people to keep a safe distance from others while waiting to pay.
Like Asda, Tesco is installing protective screens at our checkouts, and where possible will create separate entrances and exits to our stores so that it’s easier to keep a safe distance from other shoppers.
A Tesco spokesperson said: “We are introducing additional measures to protect our customers and colleagues, and ensure that everyone in our stores maintains a safe distance. We're asking customers to help by following some simple requests when they shop with us.”
Lidl, Morrisons, Aldi, Iceland and Sainsbury's have also installed protective screens for staff, while Waitrose has ordered screens and visors for its workers.
Supermarkets are also trying to encourage customers not to use cash, but to pay by contactless card instead.
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