Customers are searched as they enter the store.
“We have instituted a new search process for our people and customers’ safety and protection,” said Kirsten Hewett, head of communications for Woolworths.
Hewett did not provide specific details on how customers would be searched nor how long the policy would be in place, citing the “sensitivity of the investigation”.
Many shoppers had not yet heard of the new search policy. Some approved of it while others were hesitant.
“I think it will help. It is a minor security check. It is not something huge and embarrassing. It’s not like a strip-search. It would not stop me from shopping at Woolworths,” said Reyem Meyers at the Musgrave store.
Others said they would only feel comfortable if the process was non-invasive and quick.
“I think it will work but how do people get searched? Do they strip down? Or will it be like how it is at the airport? It depends how it’s done. If the way they are doing it is quick and I do not feel intimidated then it is okay,” said Sibonelo Biyela of KwaDukuza.
Another shopper was critical of the search policy, but added that they had not visited Woolworths since the bomb threats began in July.
“It (the searches) is an inconvenience. Obviously, I am not going there due to the bomb scare. It is not nice to go and be searched because you need to get to where you are going,” said Lauren Moses of Pinetown.
Hewett thanked customers for their patience and understanding.