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Coronavirus outbreak declared after 3 workers at northwest London Walmart test positive

Walmart file photo.
Walmart file photo. AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File

An outbreak has officially been declared after three employees at a Walmart Supercentre store in London’s northwest end recently tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) said Friday.

The three staff members all worked in the checkout area of the store, located at 1280 Fanshawe Park Rd. W. near Hyde Park Road. The health unit says their last days of work were Sept. 6, 13 and 15.

Despite their close proximity to customers, the health unit concluded that patrons of the store were at low risk of exposure to the virus due to the plexiglass barriers that are installed at each checkout.

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That being said, health officials say both staff and customers of the store should monitor themselves for symptoms and get tested if symptomatic.

“The Health Unit is working closely with Walmart and staff at the store to ensure that any close contacts of the individuals are contacted,” the health unit said in a statement.

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The outbreak is the third declared just this week, following two earlier outbreaks associated with gatherings involving Western University students.

Read more: How Western University’s largest COVID-19 cluster happened

In a statement, Walmart Canada’s director of corporate affairs, Adam Grachnik, told 980 CFPL in an email that the company was continuing to speak with local health officials, adding that the store involved recently conducted a deep cleaning.

He added that Walmart would continue to take measures to support the well-being of both customers and associates.

To keep people safe, Grachnik noted that the company has increased cleaning throughout the store, is checking the temperature of all associates at the start of each shift, is limiting the number of people in the store and is cleaning shopping carts.

Word of the outbreak comes a day after the MLHU and officials with Western University reported at least 28 cases among the university’s student population.