SHOPPING CHANGES: Hy-Vee making changes to keep stores safer for shoppers, employees

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- These days, a trip to the grocery store is much more concerning than it once was, as we all try to stop the spread of COVID-19.

At Hy-Vee, store employees are taking several precautions to keep the store as safe as possible.

You will see the steps are taking even before you go into the store. You can only enter one way. A new Springfield-Greene County order limits the number of customers allowed in any retail store. The store's management is working with the fire marshal's office to figure out an exact number, but they believe it's around 250 customers.

Here, the store director says they are working with the Fire Marshal's Office to figure out that number, but they believe it's around 250.

Inside the store, Hy-Vee installed protective plexiglass panels at the registers meant to protect the customers and employees. Employees hope to add more protective panels on the back side of the registers. You will also see spots marked on the floor, reminding people to stay six-feet apart.

Cashiers will wipe down the conveyor belt between each customer, to try and cut down on transmission of the virus. Employees taped one way arrows down every aisle in the store to prevent customers from crossing paths and breaking social distancing guidelines. They ask you pay attention and follow the arrows. Hy-Vee also asks shoppers to use one cart per customer.

"Obviously not a mandatory thing," said Brad Auge, Hy-Vee store director. "However, it's best if we could have only one person from a family that's designated as the shopper. That way, we're not having four or five family members all shopping at once, especially now that the governor has asked us to control the number of customers that are in the store at one time. This will make it a lot better experience for everybody involved."

Auge says they didn't come close to the limit yesterday during the first day of counting. But if that did happen, customers would have to wait in a line outside, allowing one in for every one that came out.

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