NATIONAL REPORT — Convenience stores remain open, taking enhanced steps to offer safe environments for their customers. However, retailers have made the decision to shutter locations for deep cleaning after employees contracted the novel coronavirus.
Pennsylvania-based Wawa Inc. temporarily closed roughly a dozen c-stores after an associate in each of the locations tested posted for COVID-19, according to WPVI-TV.
"Wawa will always remain transparent, especially in times of uncertainty, and we continue to take immediate action to protect our customers and associates. It is our policy and public health guidance to close stores for professional deep cleaning and disinfecting after being notified of an associate with a confirmed case of COVID-19," the company said in a statement on March 28. "We are notifying our customers of temporary closures in stores for precautionary cleaning and sanitizing. We will continue to provide more information as we have it, including when the store will re-open."
The affected stores include five in Pennsylvania, five in New Jersey and one in Delaware. As of March 29, all but two of the stores welcomed back customers.
In addition, a Circle K store in St. Charles, Mo., temporarily closed last week for cleaning after one its associates also tested positive for COVID-19, according to Fox2Now.
"Following a complete sanitization of the location, we intend to reopen our Circle K store on Elmo St. in St. Charles [on March 25th] with employees from other stores. Circle K is committed to keeping its stores operating as we know our customers rely on us more than ever for fuel, emergency items and staples during this unprecedented crisis," Circle K said in a statement to the news outlet. "The health and safety of our customers and employees is our key priority, and we are going the extra mile to keep our stores clean. Our teams are also hard at work to increase our stock to meet our customers' needs. As the situation evolves, we will do our very best to keep them informed via our website and social channels."
Circle K is Canada-based Alimentation Couche-Tard's global convenience store brand.