Washington State to Require Restaurants With Dine-In Service to Keep Log of Customers

London, UK – August 31, 2019: View through the window of staff and customers inside Buns and Buns restaurant in Covent Garden Market, one of the most popular tourist sites in London, UK.

Restaurants in Washington State will be required to keep a log of diners that includes their name, telephone number and other contact information.

Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, said any restaurant that wants to engage in dine-in service must comply with strict government guidelines.

“Restaurant/tavern must ensure strict adherence to all measures established by the Governor’s guidance, the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) Coronavirus (COVID-19) Prevention: General Requirements and Prevention Ideas for Workplaces, and the Washington State Department of Health Workplace and Employer Resources & Recommendations (DOH),” read an official government statement.

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Restaurants will also be barred from serving buffet-style. Salad bars are also banned, the governor said.

Following, is the full list of guidelines:

1. Hand sanitizer should be available at entry for all staff and patrons (assuming supply availability).

2. No bar seating is permitted during Phase 2. If an establishment has bar seating it must be closed off to prohibit use.

3. If the establishment does not offer table service, they must have protocols in place to ensure adequate social distancing at food and drink pick-up stations, and seating within their dining area.

4. All parties and tables must be 5 guests or less.

5. Guest occupancy must be 50% of maximum building occupancy or lower as determined by the fire code. Outdoor seating is permitted but must also be at 50% capacity. Outdoor seating does not count toward the building occupancy limit. Outdoor seating must follow all other requirements in this document.

6. Tables must be placed far enough apart when measured from occupied chair to occupied chair, to ensure dine-in guests seated at a table are a minimum of 6 feet away from guests at adjacent table, or there must be a physical barrier or wall separating booths or tables.

7. It is strongly suggested customers wear a cloth face covering anytime they are not seated at the table (while being seated or leaving, or while going to the restroom).

8. Buffets and salad bars are not permitted at this time but may be addressed through subsequent interpretive guidance.

9. If the establishment offers table service, create a daily log of all customers and maintain that daily log for 30 days, including telephone/email contact information, and time in. This will facilitate any contact tracing that might need to occur.

10. Single use menus are required for in-person dining.

11. Any condiments typically left on the table (ketchup, soy sauce, etc.) must be single-use or sanitized after each use.

12. Restaurants must have implemented a plan to ensure proper physical distancing in lobby/waiting areas/payment counters.

13. Minimize the number of staff serving any given table. It is strongly recommended that one staff person take a table’s order, bring all of their beverages/food/utensils, take their payment, etc.

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