Sainsbury’s installs safety screens between checkouts

Sainsbury’s is continuing to roll out initiatives across its store estate in order to keep customers and colleagues safe as it feeds the nation.

The company has announced that it is introducing new safety screens between manned checkouts in 150 of its busiest supermarkets to save customers time, reduce queues and help keep everyone safe. Sainsbury’s is the first retailer to reopen such a large number of manned checkouts in its supermarkets.

The safety screens will be installed between manned checkouts so there is a clear barrier between queues. This enables the retailer to reopen the vast majority of belted checkouts and means customers will be able to pay for their shopping faster while still ensuring social distancing guidelines are met. Sainsbury’s also expects queues outside stores to be smaller.

The checkout screens complement other initiatives the retailer has introduced to keep customers and colleagues safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. These include protective screens at all manned checkouts, kiosks and service desks, social distancing floor markings and signage, limiting numbers in stores and additional cleaning.

Graham Biggart, Sainsbury’s Director of Commercial Operations, said, “Customer and colleague safety is our highest priority and we want to support our customers to pay for their shopping as quickly as possible by reducing queues. These protective screens will make it easier to shop in store, so thank you to our colleagues and partners who have worked so hard to get them up and running.”

Sainsbury’s trialled the new screens in its Whitechapel store for just over a week and customers responded well. The company is focused on installing the screens in its busiest stores but will review whether more stores would benefit from the new divider screens in due course.

The supermarket is also commencing a trial into safety screens at self-service checkouts, with the same ambition to save customers time and stay safe.