Asda hit by coronavirus outbreak as customers blast ‘no social distancing’

An Asda supermarket has been rocked by a coronavirus outbreak, as customers claim there was “no social distancing” and shoppers without masks.

Eight workers have tested positive for Covid-19 at the Cape Hill branch in Smethwick, the West Midlands.

It was shut for a deep clean and the employees are self-isolating – but the store has since reopened and Asda insists the risk to the public is "low".

However, customers were unimpressed with its coronavirus policies.

One wrote on Facebook: “I went in there last Sunday and won’t be returning because it was business as normal for them….there was no social distancing whatsoever, hardly anyone with masks on so is it any wonder?”

Another said: “We went the weekend, a lot of people not bothering or just using chin masks.”

Another added: “I went in the Cape Hill one (on) Friday, there is no social distancing at all and hardly anyone in face masks.

“I am never going in there again, (there were) even customers all in a group talking in aisles.

“You need to send people in there to make customers social distance and wear masks.”

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In August, Asda said it encourages shoppers to wear masks – but that “is the responsibility of the relevant authorities to police the new rules”.

Describing the most recent outbreak, the supermarket chain confirmed in a statement: “A small number of colleagues at the Cape Hill store have tested positive and immediately self-isolated.

"As soon as we became aware, we notified Public Health England and Sandwell Council and enacted a comprehensive deep clean at the store, while introducing additional cleaning.

"The safety of our customers and colleagues is our top priority and we have introduced extensive measures across all our stores to help keep everyone safe, including protective screens at every checkout, social distancing signage and hand sanitiser.

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"No delivery drivers have been infected and the shop remains open.

"The safety of our customers and colleagues is our top priority."

The Sandwell borough, which includes Smethwick, had an infection rate of 25.3 cases per 100,000 up until August 27 and was described as an area for enhanced support last week.

Its director of public health Dr Lisa McNally said businesses must “maintain social distancing” and “ensure face coverings are worn”.

Daily Star Online has approached Asda for further comment.

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