Coronavirus: McDonald’s announces new dine-in safety measures

The president of McDonald's USA outlined some plans for dining in after the pandemic ends.
Caption
The president of McDonald's USA outlined some plans for dining in after the pandemic ends.

Credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

McDonald’s has not announced when it will open its dining rooms yet, but the fast-food giant revealed additional measures it will take when people are allowed to eat inside one of the company’s 14,000 stores.

The coronavirus watch remains in effect, but corporate leaders at the Golden Arches are already making plans for when the pandemic ends.

"As cities and states begin to ease restrictions, we are moving thoughtfully and judiciously with guidance provided by local authorities," McDonald's USA President Joe Erlinger said in a news release.

Erlinger said his team has been meeting three times daily to evaluate and adjust plans. Tentative moves include closing some seating and tables to be in line with social distancing; more frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces, including tables; employees wearing masks and gloves; making masks and gloves available for customers; keeping Play Places closed; and modifying its drive-in beverage procedures to keep contact to a minimum.

Erlinger said his team has implemented nearly 50 process changes in the restaurants and have beefed up training for its crews, Nation's Restaurants News reported.

Food will be delivered on sanitized trays in double-folded bags, with social distancing rules followed, a McDonald’s spokesperson said. Some seating also will be designated as unavailable to maintain distance between patrons. Signs will indicate when a seating area is safe or ready for use,

Dine-in tables also will be cleaned and sanitized after every use, the spokesperson said.

"McDonald's, in partnership with owner-operators will make reopening decisions that are right for the local communities and help ensure restaurant crew and customers feel safe and welcome," Erlinger said in the company's news release. "We look forward to welcoming you back into our dining rooms, when the timing is right and with these extra precautions in place."