Safety Tips For Eating Out During Coronavirus Outbreak

Mar 13, 2020, 5:01 PM | Updated: 5:10 pm
Tables sit empty at a restaurant on San Francisco's popular Pier 39 tourist destination on March 12...
Tables sit empty at a restaurant on San Francisco's popular Pier 39 tourist destination on March 12, 2020 in San Francisco, California. The spread of COVID-19 has negatively affected a wide range of industries all across the nation as Americans cope with the sudden economic downturn. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Concern about COVID-19 has many Utah families spending more time at home, but some people may want to venture out to grab a bite to eat at a restaurant.

The Center for Disease Control has some tips for interacting in public spaces. First and foremost, frequent hand-washing and not touching your face are recommended. If anyone is feeling unwell, they should not go out in public. People should always seek the latest info from the CDC or local health department for recommendations in their community.

Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets, according to the CDC

“Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. Before preparing or eating food it is important to always wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds for general food safety,” the CDC website reads.

It is possible for a person to get COVID-19 by touching an object that has the virus on it, and then touching their mouth, nose, or eyes, according to the CDC. “This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads,” the article states.

“In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient, refrigerated, or frozen temperatures,” the website reads.

Individuals at higher risk for COVID-19 should use more precaution, according to the CDC.

“When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick; limit close contact and wash your hands often; and avoid crowds, cruise travel, and non-essential travel. If there is an outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible,” the website reads.

In light of current world events, McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski shared an update on their response to COVID-19.

“While the outbreak of coronavirus is unpredictable and uncontrollable, it is nevertheless a situation that requires our commitment and our leadership,” Kempczinski said in a video on the McDonald’s website. “Our local communities need us now more than ever.”

They have been monitoring the impact of coronavirus and said they will provide the highest standard of hygiene and cleanliness, as well as travel guidance and restrictions for their employees. They have canceled in-person world-wide conventions, and will hold it digitally instead.

“There is hard an important work ahead,” Kempczinski said.

The fast food chain recently tweeted an image of proper hand-washing in response to the news.

Chick-fil-A also tweeted about their response to coronavirus, providing details on efforts their staff have been making to keep stores clean and safe.


On their website, Chick-fil-A said they will partner with local health departments to follow their guidance.

“As part of our protocols, our restaurants have heightened their cleaning and disinfecting procedures to maintain a healthy environment for our Guests and Team Members. We’ve instructed anyone who is not feeling well to stay home out of an abundance of caution and self-monitor their symptoms,” the website reads.

“In addition, actions we have taken over the past several years have helped us prepare for scenarios like this and throughout this process, we have been continuously refining and implementing new procedures. From food safety to health and hygiene to cleaning and sanitation, we have allocated an abundance of resources into building chainwide guidelines that go above and beyond requirements,” the website reads.

The Texas-based Whataburger tweeted about the extra measures they’re taking to keep customers safe.

“Whataburger has been in direct communication with the CDC, and we are closely monitoring all developments related to COVID-19. We have instituted certain travel rules and restrictions of our employees, as outlined by the CDC. We are prepared to take additional actions, as the situation evolves, to help ensure the safety, health, and well-being of our customers and employees,” their website reads.

Some of the sanitation procedures being implemented include double hand-washing and using hand sanitizer every 30 minutes, high touch-point areas being disinfected more frequently, and single-use towels for hand drying.

To ensure safety while eating out, people should seek the latest information form local and state health officials, and from the CDC.

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Safety Tips For Eating Out During Coronavirus Outbreak