Shoppers, workers adapt to Virginia’s mask mandate: ‘I wish it was in effect earlier’

Local News

MECHANICSVILLE, Va. (WRIC) — Flyers were spread out inside a Mechanicsville Wawa on Friday in order to remind customers they can’t go inside without face coverings. While inside the store, 8News observed most people wearing masks but some with no face coverings who were not asked to leave or put one on.

On the mask mandate’s first day in effect, store managers like Ashley Rawls said most people are complying.

“Ninety-five percent of them have had a mask on today,” Rawls, the manager of Fas Mart in Mechanicsville, told 8News. “I think it’s a good thing. I wish it was in effect earlier.”

Rawls explained that they had to tell a couple of customers that they couldn’t enter the store without a mask.

“If you don’t have a mask then we can’t help you but if you know someone that’s outside and they have a mask and they’d like to come get your purchase, they’re more than welcome to,” she said.

Rawls tried to work with the customers, offering them masks for sale.

“It makes me feel really bad because they’re my lottery customers and I don’t like taking people out because our business, we lose a little business from that,” she explained.

In one Kroger located in Carytown, 8News counted 47 out of 50 people walking in with a face covering on already.

“It looked good,” said shopper Brian Commodore. “Everybody that I’ve seen, for the most part was wearing a mask.”

8News counted again at a Kroger in Mechanicsville. Nine out of 50 people who entered didn’t have masks on when they first entered the grocery store. Greg Akers, one shopper at the Mechanicsville store, said he doesn’t like the mandate but he’s complying with the rules.

“Most of the people in the store were wearing masks,” Akers told 8News. “Just out of respect for the store. I don’t want to cause any problems for the store and the business owners. But for myself personally, I think it serves no purpose.”

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