McDonald’s announces nationwide standards for reopening dining areas

While most McDonald’s locations have remained open throughout business closings during the coronavirus pandemic, the dining areas of most restaurant locations have been closed.

As states begin implementing guidelines on how businesses can reopen, many companies are strategizing about how to minimize risks and potential spread of the COVID-19 virus.

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In a press release, McDonald’s USA President Joe Erlinger said the company has devised 50 process changes to help employees and customers stay safe.

Erlinger said one of the highest priorities is enforcing physical distancing between workers and restaurant visitors.

“We are building on the processes already in place such as wellness checks, social distancing floor stickers, protective barriers at order points, masks and gloves for employees with the addition of new procedures, and training for the reopening of dining rooms,” he said.

Some of the new standards are as follows:

  • Closing off some seating and tables to accommodate social distancing
  • Securing hand sanitizer or hand wipes to make available for all customers
  • Dine-in tables will be cleaned and sanitized after each use, and restaurants provided signage they can use to indicate which tables have been sanitized
  • Play areas will remain closed
  • Gloves and masks are required by food prep and service area employees, including those working in the drive-thru and front counters
  • Beverage bars will remain closed or sectioned off and staffed in restaurants
  • Protective panels will be installed on counters and in drive-thrus

All 14,000 McDonald’s locations are required to implement the new standards before reopening the dining areas.

McDonald’s said each location will make reopening decisions "that are right for the local communities and help ensure restaurant crew and customers feel safe and welcome.”