Woolworths enforces social distancing rules by marking areas on the floor so customers queue correctly – but not all shoppers are doing the right thing
- Woolworths introduces new measures to enforce the new social distancing rules
- Floor markings at check-outs and roll-out of glass screens to protect staff
- Shoppers have welcomed and are respecting the measures adopted this week
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
Floor markings are being rolled out in Woolworths stores across the country to ensure shoppers obey the new social distancing rules put in place to combat the spread of COVID-19.
The supermarket giant has introduced a series of changes in recent days to maintain the 1.5-metre rule announced by the federal government last week.
Shoppers are now urged to keep one trolley length between each other.
Floor markings will also be implemented at registers every 1.5 metres while the rollout of glass screens to protect staff at the checkout began on Monday.
New floor markings at Woolworths Mount Gravatt in Brisbane show how far shoppers should keep apart when waiting to be served at the checkouts
The floor markings are already in many Sydney stores, including Town Hall, Surry Hills and Balmain.
Brisbane woman Barbara Lynch saw the floor markings for the first time when she visited Woolworths in Mount Gravatt on Tuesday night.
She said shoppers at the store in the city’s south were respecting the new markings as they waited to pay for their groceries.
‘It’s unfortunate it’s come to this because people weren’t keeping the 1.5m distance,’ Ms Lynch told Daily Mail Australia.
Floor markings are being rolled out across the country. Pictured is Sydney CBD’s Town Hall store on Monday
Ms Lynch encouraged other supermarkets to follow Woolworths’ lead.
‘Any measures they put in place are a good thing,’ she said.
‘People want to feel safe when they go to the supermarket to shop. Any measures to protect staff as well are also good.’
But not everyone is obeying the floor markings.
‘The service assistant in the Surry Hills store is ignoring customers are standing too close in the checkout queue ( despite markings on the floor ). He is also directing customers to use all the available self service checkouts, some which are at best a metre apart,’ one shopper posted on the Woolworths Facebook page.
Another shopper suggested high contrast tape be sued for floor markings so shoppers with restricted visibility can see them.
Plexiglass screens were installed at Sydney’s Town Hall and Kellyville North stores and will be rolled out at other Woolworths stores nationwide in the coming weeks.
‘As our team members continue providing for the community, we will do everything necessary to uphold public health and safety in our stores,’ managing director Claire Peters said on Monday.
New glass screens have been installed at the Woolworths Town Hall store in Sydney’s CBD
‘We know it’s not always easy to maintain social distancing at our checkouts, so we’ve started installing plexiglass screens as an additional safeguard for our team members and customers.
‘We thank our customers for their understanding as we work through these challenging times together.’
Coles is yet to comment on whether stores will adopt floor marking and glass screens but has urged customers to keep a trolley’s length from one another.
There are calls to extend measures further to cap the number of supermarket shoppers in-store at any one time to 50, which is now happening in Europe.
‘My suggestion to make supermarkets a safer place to be is to make all aisles one-way. This could be achieved by arrows on the ground and signs above. This way, shoppers would not be bumping into each other, but could pass safely using the 1.5 metre system,’ one shopper posted on the Woolworths Facebook page.
Shoppers are urged to keep a trolley’s length away from each other. Pictured are shoppers waiting for Woolworths to open in western Sydney last week