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San Diego grocery stores, shoppers handle increased demand

Limiting how many people are in a store at a time allows shoppers to maintain 6 feet of separation, recommended by health officials to prevent spreading coronavirus.

SAN DIEGO — Grocery stores are starting to take action in response to overwhelming demand amid the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. Many are putting limits on high-demand items, such as toilet paper, paper towels and canned goods to prevent hoarding.

Some reduced hours to give employees more time to safely stock shelves and clean. However, this often means crowds will gather in long lines.

Vons, Costco, 99 Ranch and other retailers in San Diego and elsewhere are limiting how many people can enter the store at one time. This allows customers to shop and maintain six feet of separation, which is recommended by health officials to prevent spreading coronavirus.

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Several social media users praised Costco’s handling of the crowds. Employees at local stores enforced the separation of customers while waiting in line. They also wrote what was out of stock on a board to prevent unnecessary queuing.

Some Vons stores placed line markers to help customers estimate distance while waiting to check out.

Other users expressed frustration at stores and restaurants that were not enforcing the rules.

Some retailers are also instituting special hours for senior citizens:

  • Albertson’s/Vons:- 7 am -9 am Tuesday and Thursday.
  • Barons Market: 9 am -10 am Daily
  • Costco: 8 am - 9 am Tuesday and Thursday
  • Food 4 Less: 7 am - 7:30 am Daily
  • Gelson’s Market: 7 am - 8 am Daily
  • Northgate Market: 7 am - 8 am Daily
  • Ralphs: 7 am - 7:30 am Daily
  • Target: 8 am - 9 am Wednesday
  • Walmart: 6 am - 7 am Tuesdays

RELATED: Senior Resource Guide: helping seniors and people with preexisting conditions in San Diego

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