SOUTHERN OCEAN COUNTY, NJ — The COVID-19 outbreak may mean a glitch in some summer travel plans. Fears of becoming stranded on a cruise or infected during air travel have many holding off on faraway trips. Alternatively, at the Jersey shore, homeowners are getting ready for a full season of summer guests. Many have added some extra steps to their usual protocol so their short-term guests will be safe and happy.

Natty Clanton of Natty Cleans & More, LCC, has several clients who own summer rentals on Long Beach Island and in other communities throughout Southern Ocean County. During the season, Clanton provides cleaning services between renters. Amid the pandemic, she’s added some extra steps.

“The health and safety of our customers and employees is our highest priority during this time, shared Clanton. “While we cannot control the severity or unpredictability of this virus, we can take preventive measures to limit the spread and impact of COVID-19.”

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According to Clanton, her company has adopted preventive safety measures following the guidance set forth by the U.S. Federal Government, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and other health agencies. Her business model starts with the protection of her employees.

“Our employees are supplied with face masks, foot covering, and rubber gloves,” Clanton explains in a letter she gives to homeowners.  “In specific instances like cleaning bathrooms, our staff will be provided with face shields.”

Clanton also advises her clients of the steps her company takes to sanitize surface areas, including light switches, doorknobs, bathroom surfaces, and other commonly touched areas. She uses specific tools and switches out cleaning clothes and mopheads between homes.

Reportedly, some cleaning services and homeowners opt to use disinfectant foggers. These are also referred to “germ foggers” and not intended for use until surfaces have been thoroughly cleaned first. Some question the safety of both humans and pets inhaling the spray released.

Meanwhile, the novel coronavirus still has some wondering about its spread. In its current update, the CDC indicates that person to person contact seems to be the most common way the virus spreads. However, there are also indication that “a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.”

Michele Morrison is the Chief Hospital Executive at Southern Ocean Medical Center in Stafford. She acknowledges that because the virus is so new, there is mixed information on how long it lives on surfaces.

People who come to stay some time at a beach home may want to bring along some of the cleaning products they use in their regular residences.

“I think anything like the use of Clorox wipes or Lysol wipes, or any type of disinfectant will do a good job in killing the virus,” shares Morrison. “We use a hospital grade product here for that reason.”

After a couple of months of isolation or the stress of an essential job, taking up residence at the beach sounds inviting.  Towns like Beach Haven already began preparation for summer guests early last month. 

Outdoor dining and retail shops are looking forward to reopening in just a short time. Just yesterday, Governor Murphy gave the go-ahead for reopening on June 15. Those who have a favorite shore stylist will just need to wait until June 22 for an appointment.

Visitors to Ocean County beaches have several opportunities to take in the sand and surf at the Atlantic Ocean.  Information about beach passes can be found here.  While there are no lifeguards on duty at the Barnegat Bay Beach, there’s also no cost to enjoy the shallow waters.  Just be aware that the locals suggest checking the direction of the winds to avoid the greenhead flies.

Summer. Sunshine. Surf. Serenity. A vacation at the Jersey shore just got better. The pandemic may have changed the way people do some things. In this case, it may mean appreciating family in an invigorating and new setting.


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