More social distancing measures suggested in Calvert County stores

Shopping on certain days depending on the first letter of your last name. Disinfecting wipes for shopping carts. Limiting customers per square feet.

These are the latest measures suggested by the health department in Calvert County, Maryland, for shoppers and stores.

Citing overcrowding in grocery and convenience stores, the county’s health department is asking customers to “voluntarily limit trips for groceries to once every five days” on this schedule:

  • Last name starting with A-C shop on dates ending with 0 and 5
  • Last name starting with D-G shop on dates ending with 1 and 6
  • Last name starting with H-L shop on dates ending with 2 and 7
  • Last name starting with M-R shop on dates ending with 3 and 8
  • Last name starting with S-Z shop on dates ending with 4 and 9

“The public is advised there are currently no restrictions in Calvert County, Maryland. Citizens may continue to shop at their convenience,” the Board of County Commissioners said in a statement.

The county is also “strongly” recommending that both customers and employees cover their faces.

Starting Thursday, the county’s health department had these guidelines for shoppers and stores:

  • People standing in line need to be at least 6 feet apart.
  • Disinfecting wipes need to be made available for customers to wipe down shopping carts, or those shopping carts must be properly disinfected.
  • Employees need to wear face masks and have the chance to wash their hands each hour.
  • Stores should limit customers to five people per 1,000 square feet.

The county’s health department said in a statement Wednesday that these measures are in line with what some other major retailers like Walmart and Giant Food already have in place.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to clarify that these are just suggested guidelines from the county’s health department and not restrictions. It also includes a statement from the Calvert County Board of County Commissioners.

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Teta Alim

Teta Alim is a Digital Editor at WTOP. Teta's interest in journalism started in music and moved to digital media.

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