The department said it closed the store after receiving complaints from employees and shoppers about the “lack of social distancing, too many people in the store at one time, and employees not wearing masks or face coverings.”
“These deaths underscore the severity of the highly-contagious coronavirus, and the need for diligent safety precautions to prevent any further spread, including the wearing of masks,” Dr. John Douglas Jr., executive director of the Tri-County Health Department, said in a statement.
Added the spokesperson: “We recognize how hard this is for our associates in Aurora and everyone impacted by this difficult situation. We want to do everything we can to support them at this time. We will continue to work closely with Tri-County Health Department and take additional steps as needed to re-open the store.”
Walmart has responded to the coronavirus crisis by installing plexiglass barriers at checkout lanes and social distancing markers around the store. It has also been taking workers’ temperatures before they begin their shifts and started requiring that workers wear masks on duty.
The company also said it has been limiting the number of customers who can be in a store at the same time.
Dozens of grocery store and retail workers have died from the coronavirus, and thousands have gotten sick. Walmart declined to say how many of its employees have died or tested positive for coronavirus. The company said it relies on public health departments for those numbers.