Asda supermarket in Southport. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Asda in Southport is employing new Covid-19 marshals to ensure that shoppers wear masks.

The supermarket chain has announced that it is taking on 1,000 new Covid-19 marshals across its stores in the UK as tougher new rules come in this week to combat the recent rise of coronavirus cases. 

Some shoppers have asked supermarkets including Asda, Morrisons, Sainsburys, and Tesco, to impose restrictions on buying essential items, such as toilet roll and tinned goods in bulk, after some reports of panic buying at some shops in the UK yesterday. 

Asda says that it is deploying 1,000 new safety marshals to help enforce the Government’s advice to wear face masks inside stores. 

Staff will give sanitised baskets and trolleys to customers as they enter the store. 

Asda said that customers who do not have a face covering when they enter a shop will be offered a pack of disposable masks that they can pay for as they complete their shopping. 

It comes as supermarkets have urged shoppers not to panic buy after a surge this week in anticipation of the tighter Covid-19 restrictions that were announced by Boris Johnson on Tuesday.

Anthony Hemmerdinger, Chief Operating Officer at Asda, said: “We know that safety remains a key priority for our customers and we will continue to do all we can to keep them and our colleagues safe in store, as we have since the start of the pandemic. 

“These additional measures will make our stores an even safer place to shop and work during the coming months.”

Asda also confirmed that as per the change to Government guidance, all staff will now wear a face covering at work unless they have a medical exemption and they will introduce additional hand sanitisation stations in stores.

And the supermarket group will be applying a protective coating to all basket and trolley handles, creating an antimicrobial surface that prevents the spread of bacteria and viruses. 

The same coating technology (Bio Master X shield) is already used to kill bacteria and viruses in the NHS Nightingale Excel hospital.

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