Park, Sheridan And Campbell County Increase Grocery Store Visits In March

Apr 15, 2020

Credit I-5 Design & Manufacture

Residents of Park, Sheridan and Campbell County went to grocery stores and pharmacies more often during March. That's according to Google data from users who have opted in to location history for their Google account.

The Google COVID-19 Community Mobility Report shows how visits and lengths of stay at different places changed compared to a baseline before most states recommended or ordered people to stay at home.

Overall, Wyomingites have decreased their visits to retail, transit, and workplace locations. Meanwhile Park, Sheridan and Campbell County residents increased their trips to grocery stores and pharmacies by 12, five and eight percent, respectively.

Park County Public Health Officer Dr. Aaron Billin said he can only assume why that's the case.

"People perceive there is some need to stock up on things," said Billin. "We now know that we don't need any more food, or any more toilet paper than we needed before this pandemic started."

Billin said people should caution going to the grocery store too often because it is a risk factor.

"People congregate in grocery stores, they're a higher risk activity in our communities. We can't close the grocery stores. People have to have food to eat, they have to buy the essentials," said Billin.

So, he recommends only one person from a household should go to the grocery store at most once a week. And he asks that people wear the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks and gloves.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Kamila Kudelska, at kkudelsk@uwyo.edu.