CLEVELAND (WJW) — Starting Monday, a new order from Governor Mike DeWine will require retailers and grocery stores in Ohio to limit the number of people inside their businesses.
Several stores are already implementing changes before the deadline.
Customers lined up outside of the Costco Wholesale warehouse in Strongsville Friday afternoon, as the retailer regulates the number of people who can enter the store at one time.
While they wait, they are spread out at least six feet apart.
“The new order requires businesses to establish a number of people that should be in that business at one time, we’re not telling them what number to set,” said Governor DeWine during his Thursday coronavirus briefing.
Thursday is when DeWine signed an executive order that goes into effect on Monday.
It is designed to encourage social distancing inside retail establishments, preventing overcrowded conditions that many Ohioans have complained about while shopping during the coronavirus pandemic.
For example, starting Saturday, Walmart will only let inside five customers per one thousand square feet of floor space, they say that is roughly 20-percent of a store’s capacity.”
Each Walmart will designate one entrance, usually the grocery entrance, where customers will be let into the store one at a time. When the store reaches its new capacity, customers will then be let in on a “one out, one in” basis.
In some stores, traffic in the aisles will be directed one way to ensure social distancing.
We want each of these businesses to set a number, post a number and then if they fill that number, then they stop people from coming in,” said DeWine.
Other big box retailers as well as grocery stores are implementing similar restrictions. Some have installed clear plastic shields to separate cashiers from the general public.
Lowe’s announced it will also temporarily increase employees’ salaries by two dollars an hour.
At Friday’s White House coronavirus task force briefing, Vice President Mike Pence praised the efforts of state and local governments and retailers.
“People that operate malls and shopping centers around the country have embraced and enacted the coronavirus guidelines for America,” said Pence.