Walmart installs coronavirus floor decals to keep people apart

When someone coughs or sneezes, droplets travel about 3-6 ft

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Walmart is reminding its customers to practice social distancing within its stores, a measure implemented by officials to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus.

Over the next few days, the world's largest retailer will be placing floor decals at entrances and in checkout lanes of its stores in an effort to remind customers to stay at least six feet apart from one another.

[Credit: Walmart.com]

"Washing hands and social distancing are two of the most important things people can do right now to stay safe – but sometimes it can be difficult to judge the six-foot distance," Dacona Smith, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Walmart U.S., said in a note to customers Tuesday.

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Social distancing is a practice used to try to curb the spreading of the virus, which causes a disease called COVID-19, and protect those most vulnerable, including the elderly and people with weakened immune systems.

In addition to the decals, the company implemented a variety of new guidelines in an effort to remain open while keeping its customers and associates safe.

Over the next few weeks, the company will install plexiglass barriers, which will act as sneeze guards, at Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies and at regular Walmart registers. Stores will also begin using the Hart brand two-gallon sprayer kits, which are currently sold in-store, to sanitize shopping carts quicker and more thoroughly.

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The company is also helping its employees gain access to their paychecks sooner than the normal two-week pay period and is offering free medical and behavioral health services to associates and their family members.

"We remain focused on helping customers and associates stay healthy," Smith said. "Based on advice from the medical community, learnings from Walmart’s international markets, and new information we’re learning every day, we will continue creating and providing additional safety measures for our people and stores."

To date, the virus has infected more than 436,000 people worldwide and over 19,600 people have died due to the outbreak, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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