Posted: 26.03.20 at 14:02 by Joseph Bulmer
New 'distancing measures' will be introduced at Honiton Tesco supermarket in the coming days.
CEO Dave Lewis has detailed new steps being taken across all the company's stores.
"To ensure we are doing everything possible to reduce the risk of infection for our customers and colleagues, we will begin to introduce new social distancing measures in stores in the coming days," he says.
• Floor markings in car parks to maintain safe distances when queuing
• Where necessary, limiting the flow of people coming into stores to ensure they don’t get congested
• Hand sanitisers inside stores for customers and staff, as well as extra cleaning products to wipe down trolleys and baskets
• In some stores, directional floor markings and new signage will be introduced to create a safe flow
• New floor markings will help keep a safe distance from others while waiting to pay
• Protective screens installed at checkouts
• Where possible, separate entrances and exits will be created at stores, so it's easier for shoppers to keep a safe distance
Tesco has already introduced a storewide restriction of three items per customer on every product line, removed multi-buy promotions and, for products where demand is particularly high, simplified ranges to get more of the most popular products on shelves.
"We have more stock coming into stores every day, with up to double the usual amounts of key essentials arriving – but we need everyone’s help: please buy only what you need, so that there is enough for everyone," says Mr Lewis.
On Sundays, NHS workers can browse large stores and select their shopping an hour before the checkouts open and Tesco is currently looking at how this can be extended to include extra days from next week.
And every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning, a special hour has been set aside for more vulnerable and elderly customers to shop between 9am and 10am.
Staff are also being supported - the company has almost 3,000 over the age of 70 and they, along with vulnerable and pregnant colleagues, are receiving 12 weeks’ fully paid absence.
Staff self-isolating are also receiving full pay from their first day of absence.
Mr Lewis is also asking customers to continue to play their part in preventing the spread of coronavirus.
"We also need your help to change the way you shop with us, so here are a few simple requests to help us serve you better.
"Please check your store's opening hours in advance.
"Before you leave home, please bring enough bags for your shop. If it’s raining, don’t forget an umbrella too, in case you need to queue outside the store.
"Try to shop with no more than one other person, which will help to reduce the number of people in-store at any one time.
"Please use our cleaning stations to wipe your trolley, basket, or Scan as you Shop handset.
"If possible, use card or contactless payments.
"Please avoid shopping during our dedicated times for vulnerable and elderly people, and NHS workers, and be kind to our colleagues as they’re working hard to serve you; we’re all in this together.
"We want to thank our suppliers, our colleagues - and especially you, our customers - for understanding and helping.
"We know these are some big changes, and we will all need to do our very best to adjust."