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Molokai’s Friendly Market reopens after virus cases

The Maui News

After being closed for about two weeks when confirmed cases of COVID-19 were reported in two employees, Friendly Market reopened Monday on Molokai.

“Everything’s going smoother than we expected,” cashier Joy Guerrero said Wednesday afternoon. “Everybody’s just happy that we’re open, and we are too.”

The market was closed and employees were in self-quarantine after the two cases were reported.

The first case, confirmed April 2, was an employee who had returned from Las Vegas on March 17 and went to work for two days after returning home. The man was hospitalized at Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu.

Two days later, a second case was reported in another employee after testing was arranged for all workers by the market’s owners, Mayor Michael Victorino, state Sen. J. Kalani English and state Rep. Lynn DeCoite said.

The reopened market has made changes, including sanitizing shopping wagons, directing the flow of customers through aisles and limiting the number of customers in the store at one time.

“It’s working,” Guerrero said. “Everybody has the hang of it.”

The market is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday, closing a couple of hours earlier than it used to.

“We’re happy to serve the community again,” Guerrero said.

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