(NEW YORK) — If your holiday weekend involves hitting the road and maybe swinging by the Golden Arches along the way, you might have to stick to the drive-thru.
According to The Wall Street Journal, upticks in COVID-19 cases nationwide have led McDonald’s to suspend by three weeks its plans to re-open more eateries for dine-in patrons, which were scheduled to begin over the July 4 weekend.
In May, the fast-food giant began reopening its dining areas to patrons; around 2,200 of its 14,000 U.S. restaurants continue to do so, according to the paper.
Those McDonald’s locations that already have fully reopened after months of drive-thru-only rules will continue to offer full service, although that depends on each state’s rules, which may have changed.
For example, officials in California, New York and New Jersey have reversed plans to re-open bars and restaurants to try to tamp down the growing number of coronavirus cases in various counties. New York has scrapped altogether a July 6 date for establishments to offer indoor dining.
In a a company letter that was obtained by WSJ by Joe Erlinger, McDonald’s U.S. president, and Mark Salebra, head of the National Franchisee Leadership Alliance owners association, the executives cautioned, “Our resiliency will be tested again. Covid-19 cases are on the rise.”
They stressed that employees should remain vigilant with food handling, social distancing and other safety measures McDonald’s put in place because of the coronavirus. “This surge shows nobody is exempt from this virus — even places that previously had very few cases,” the letter says.
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