Friday, July 30

Malls in Kuching enforce social distancing rules as shoppers reappear after relaxed restrictions

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A queue outside Ta Kiong Supermarket at The Spring.

KUCHING: Shopping malls are taking the necessary precautionary measures to protect shoppers as the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) comes into force, in compliance with the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) provided by the state government.

The Spring Management Services Sdn Bhd general manager Datin Christine Ling stressed that the safety and health of employees and customers were of the utmost importance, and the mall was taking preventative steps n to make sure that they are protected.

This includes implementing mandatory body temperature checks for every person entering the mall’s vicinity and providing hand sanitisers at every entrance, as well as limiting the number of entrances opened and encouraging social distancing.

“Our building services team has also devised a foot-activated sanitiser dispenser, which limits hand contact for our customers.

“The Spring’s Food Bazaar is also ready to serve our customers with tables placed at least two metres apart and limiting the number of diners on one table. We have also gotten all our staff and our tenant’s staff to declare their health and travel information before coming to work.

“We encourage shoppers to fill in a declaration form for contact tracing purposes via QR code. It took a while to prepare the SOP because we had to think of every scenario and how we can protect our stakeholders with each scenario,” she explained when contacted by The Borneo Post.

The Spring opens from 10am to 8pm daily, and only businesses that are prohibited during the CMCO are not allowed to operate.

Ling noted that to gain back shoppers’ confidence to shop in a public place will be the biggest challenge at this time.

“Shoppers are still very cautious about going out to crowded places, which is understandable. Therefore, we will try our very best to ensure that the mall is a safe place for everyone to shop,” she said.

A security guard performs a temperature check at the entrance of Vivacity Megamall. Photo by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

The mall management expects that there will be queues and a waiting period to enter the mall or its shops, and has appealed to customers to be patient with the situation.

“Since this will be the new normal for shoppers, we hope that our customers will understand. Let us all be patient, understanding and tolerant towards one another,” she said.

Meanwhile, over at Green Heights Mall, shoppers seen there were mostly headed to its anchor tenant Everrise Supermarket.

The mall will be operating from 10am to 10pm daily during the CMCO period, but hair and beauty salons, educational centres and fitness studios remain closed.

The mall is also actively carrying out precautionary measures such as temperature screening upon entry to the mall; hand sanitisation for all employees, shoppers and visitors to the mall at entry points; mandatory wearing of facial masks on mall premises; and compliance with physical social distancing of one metre. The tenants are also doing the same at their respective stores.

Green Heights Mall centre manager Sereni Linggi hopes all shoppers, visitors and tenants to the mall abide by the SOP given by the state government.

“More importantly, practice good personal hygiene and have the common sense to stay at home as much as possible for the next few months.

“The virus is not gone and we want to avoid a second wave because it will hit us even harder due to more movement. Go out only when necessary, now is not the time to be careless,” she said.