HUNTSVILLE, Ala. —
For many of us, the only time we're leaving our home is to run to the grocery store. But, even that can be risky.
Lt. Michael Johnson of the Huntsville Police Department says, “Stay at home. If you need to go to the grocery store, that’s fine…”
A trip to the grocery store is considered an essential reason to leave your home. But, that doesn’t mean people feel comfortable doing so.
Some local stores are making adjustments to make sure shoppers maintain social distancing in the aisles and at checkout. Stores have also posted signs and made announcements to remind shoppers to separate.
You could face a risk of being cited if you don’t adhere to Alabama’s “Stay at Home” order.
Lt. Johnson tells us, citations aren't being given out at this point. He adds, “We’ll start off with a warning. And eventually start writing down-- we’re not citing anybody-- but we will begin citing people if they’re not abiding by this order.”
When you enter the store, you should check for sanitizing wipes to wipe down the shopping cart and hand sanitizer to use afterward.
Some shoppers are wearing latex gloves and masks as they grab what they need.
The CDC has recommended wearing cloth masks in public spaces where you can't guarantee 6 feet of social distance. So, the grocery store would be an appropriate place to wear one.
Local law enforcement says certain “essential” businesses just simply need to keep their doors open. Lt. Johnson adds, “Necessities. They are things that we need every day. The grocery store, hardware stores... They’re remaining open with social distancing practices in place.”
Officials say limiting the number of people you send on a trip to the grocery store can help keep the whole family safe.
Lt. Johnson says, “Don’t bring your whole family, act like you're going on vacation.”
Madison Mayor Paul Finley says during Wednesday afternoon's daily COVID-19 briefing, “If you need to go-- and it’s a “need”-- one person, one cart.”
Locals have expressed their concerns.
Lt. Johnson says, “Right now we’re getting a lot of complaints about grocery stores and people inside not maintaining their proper social distance. You know, bringing too many family members in. So, make that list and only one of you goes inside.”
When you go inside, remember: you can wear a cloth mask, “shop with your eyes" before selecting an item to purchase to avoid touching excessive surfaces, try to avoid shopping during peak hours and never go out when feeling sick.
Wash your hands and even wipe down your phone as soon as you get home, so you don’t carry any germs for the rest of the day or transfer them to your mouth or nose.