NEW ALBANY, Miss. (WTVA) - The Walmart in New Albany closed at 2 p.m. on Monday to clean the building; however, many of its customers said they did not know about the temporary closure.
Ember Galloway was one of the many customers hoping to buy a few items from her local Walmart, but when she showed up, the doors were closed.
“I was just thinking run-of-the-mill stuff, maybe some sniffle medication, but that’s really all I can think of," she said. "It’s so inconvenient really.”
Unlike Galloway, Jessica Garner came to the store searching for essential items with her new addition in her home.
“It’s awful because I was going to get my baby, well my grandbaby, some breakfast food," said Garner. "It’s devastating.”
Garner has been shopping at the New Albany Walmart for nearly 34 years.
She said she doesn't remember a time the store was closed this early.
Garner mentioned her biggest worry is for those who were not able to make it to the store before getting off of work.
“I’m glad that I’ve got stuff for supper for tonight but I mean most people go daily and get their groceries like I used to," she explained. "So, I think they’re going to be hurting.”
Walmart's corporate affairs team explained the temporary closure as a way for the company to thoroughly clean out the building; however, Galloway sees the shutdown as, “Something that’s kind of unnecessary to a certain degree," Galloway said. "I feel like they’re supposed to be shutting the store down at a certain time each night to be able to do the stuff they claim that they’re doing right now.”
Walmart's corporate affairs team provided WTVA with this statement about the closure:
“Everything we’re doing is for the well-being of our associates and customers, and in consideration of guidance by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and health experts. When the store reopens Wednesday, we will continue conducting associate health screens and temperature checks, and all associates will be provided with facemasks and gloves.
“These protocols are in addition to the extensive measures we’ve put in place during the pandemic to help protect our associates and customers, including installing sneeze guards at registers, temperature checks and mandatory mask-wearing for associates, placing social distancing signage and enacting emergency leave policy for associates who are unable or uncomfortable coming to work. Additionally, through the help of our health ambassadors, we will continue requiring customers to wear protective facial coverings while inside the building.
“We will continue working closely with elected and local health officials, adjusting how we serve the community while also keeping the health and safety of our customers and associates in mind.”
This Walmart location will reopen on Wednesday at 7 a.m.