With COVID-19 cases in Buena Vista spiking, the Walmart in Storm Lake, Iowa shut down to deep clean the entire store.
In a statement, the company said, in part:
"Our customers are relying heavily on us for their essential needs. This affects our associates on many levels, and as part of a company-initiated program, we are taking the steps of temporarily closing this store and allowing third-party cleaning experts to further sanitize and restock the store to continue serving the community in a safe manner."
Buena Vista health officials say the retail giant's move to shut their doors temporarily was a good decision for the community.
"I think any amount of cleaning that we can do extra is definitely going to help. One of the strategies that we can use to try to mitigate and shut down our numbers a little more. So, handwashing, same thing. It affects the cleaning of surfaces frequently touched, etc," said Pam Bogue, Administrator for Buena Vista County Public Health.
Bogue adds while other businesses don't have to close, they could follow suit to keep their customers and staff protected.
"I think that's an important thing for our communities to do right now is to continue to do that extra cleaning. Especially when their having people coming into their businesses all the time," said Bogue.
The Storm Lake Walmart will re-open June 18th
STORM LAKE, Iowa (KTIV) -- The Walmart in Storm Lake, Iowa is temporarily closing its doors to sanitize the store and restock shelves.
According to the store's Facebook page, the Storm Lake Walmart will close at 2 p.m. on June 16 and stay closed all day June 17.
During that time, officials say a third-party specialist will come in to sanitize the store.
Walmart plans to reopen the Storm Lake location on June 18 at 7 a.m.
The store's post says the cleaning is part of a company-initiated program meant to ensure the safety of employees and companies, as well as, follow guidance from the CDC to better prevent the spread of the virus.
The Storm Lake Walmart says when the store reopens on Thursday it will continue to conduct employee health screenings and temperature checks, and all employees will be provided with face masks and gloves.
Walmart's store closure comes as Buena Vista County, where Storm Lake is located, has seen a rise in COVID-19 cases over the last few weeks.
As of 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, the Iowa Department of Public Health says the county has had a total of 1,600 positive cases and eight virus-related deaths since the pandemic began. On June 9 the county had just over 1,200 cases and four virus-related deaths