Some Navajo Nation casinos ramp up safety measures as they prepare to reopen

Coronavirus New Mexico

NAVAJO NATION (KRQE) – The Navajo Nation is preparing to reopen four of its casinos in the next couple of weeks. Those include Twin Arrows Casino in Arizona and Fire Rock, Northern Edge and Flowing Water casinos in New Mexico. Officials are assuring the public they’ve stepped up sanitation and will enact new rules to keep people safe.

The Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprises says that during the temporary closures, all Navajo Gaming properties went through deep biohazard cleaning and sanitation processes. They also say that all surfaces that are touched or breathed on from the floor to ceiling have had electrostatic spraying.

“Since our closure March 17, our executive team members and the Board of Directors have worked very closely with Navajo Nation Leadership, adhering to all executive orders issued by the Office of the President and Vice President,” shared Interim CEO Brian Parrish in a press release”. We continue to monitor this pandemic and follow all protocols set forth by the Navajo Nation Department of Health and U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention.”

The Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprises says the following countermeasures will be followed during the reopenings:

  • Issuance of personal protective equipment (PPE) to patrons and team members. Team members will be required to wear masks during the duration of scheduled shifts. Patrons will not be required to wear masks but are encouraged to do so during their visit to each property.
  • All team members will receive comprehensive training on infections, disease prevention and mitigation of the spread of COVID-19 as they return to work.
  • Physical distancing on casino floor, food and beverage locations, as well as other high traffic areas. Each property will open at 50 percent capacity and a 6 feet social distancing requirement throughout the facilities. Following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, signage and placards will be in place with information on social distancing, sanitation stations, handwashing and other precautionary procedures as indicated. 
  • Independent Healthcare Service Providers will conduct temperature readings with an infrared device that does not require physical contact.  Patrons and team members with temperatures of 100.4 or higher will not be allowed to enter.  Patrons will be asked to use hand sanitizer before they enter. 
  • There will be one entrance for patrons and one entrance for team members.
  • Buffets, self-service food and beverage stations will be closed until it is prudent to reopen these amenities.
  • Deep cleaning of properties will occur during the hours of 2 p.m. to 6 a.m. on a daily basis. High-touch and high traffic areas will be cleaned continuously utilizing Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

“Within the next two weeks, we hope to have all our team members returning back to work in a sterile clean environment with training on the use of PPEs and COVID-19 mitigation protocols according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines,” stated Quincy Natay, Chairman, Board of Directors Navajo Gaming in a press released. 

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