29 April 2020

Life behind Perspex Screens

Submitted by Lou Prinsloo

Companies from retail stores to car rentals aim to protect their staff and customers with a roll out of clear hygiene screens, with more to come as lockdown restrictions are eased. 

Commentators from across the spectrum agree that life after Covid-19 will never be the same again – the Coronavirus pandemic will change our hygiene behaviour substantially. From the retail store and pharmacy to the nail studio and doctor’s rooms, this new life starts behind Perspex® screens. 

Some innovations take years to gain acceptability by the public, but in these extraordinary times and with major retailers including Pick ‘n Pay and Spar having installed Perspex® screens at their till points, social distancing and the Perspex® screen is here to stay. On the other side of the fence (or screen), a majority of customers feel more comfortable with a hygienic safety barrier between them and the cashier. 

Stuart Hughes, CEO of Perspex South Africa, sees this as only the beginning of hygiene screens. “These screens will be seen in all areas of life: in banks between ATMs, in casinos separating slot machines and even in industrial environments where Perspex® screens will enable protection for people and assist in avoiding contact. For highly competitive retailers the difference between having Perspex® screens at their till points or not, may be the reason a customer chooses their store or another. It is fast becoming a competitive advantage in customer facing environments”. 

Not all screens are created equal

In the first weeks of lockdown chaos many businesses opted to install any clear hygiene screen they could find, with many makeshift wobbling panels suspended from ceilings or propped up on counters. Hughes expects a second wave in the medium term where businesses opt for a professional, long lasting solution. “Perspex® Cast Clear sheets is the original Perspex sheet available in various thicknesses for a range of applications. Besides excellent visual properties, it is proven to be fade resistant. Cleaning is easy with lukewarm water, ammonia free soap and a microfiber cloth ”, he says. “Our network of fabricators and installers have been inundated with enquiries for our Perspex® Cast Clear sheets and we are ready to supply the demand. We, together with our approved distributors, are the only genuine Perspex® suppliers in South Africa. Other suppliers offering acrylic cannot call it Perspex.” 

Hughes views their screens initiative as part of the solution in protecting citizens from contracting Covid-19. “We asked ourselves how we could make an impact. Our team, working with our amazing customers, responded with creative solutions and we are proud to make a difference on the front lines.” 

The world has changed irrevocably and the era of Perspex® screens has only just begun.  

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