PALO ALTO (CBS SF) — Businesses across the Bay Area are struggling to keep their doors open as more and more people come down with the highly infectious Omicron strain of the coronavirus.
“I see a lot of smaller businesses just cutting back. Cutting back on hours or just going out of business,” says Andrei Sarna-Wogcicki who was turned away at his favorite coffee shop in Palo Alto.READ MORE: Residents Escape Pleasanton House Fire; Neighbors Evacuated
A sign on the door at Peets Coffee informed customers that due to staffing shortages they would close at noon for the rest of the week.
Business owners have struggled to ride out wave after wave after wave of the virus, waiting for the calm seas promised after every surge. Many say they are fighting once again just to stay afloat.READ MORE: Fans Rally Behind Road Warrior San Francisco 49ers; Will Tickets Be Available For NFC Championship Game?
“We’ve had a lot of staff issues — staffing getting sick,” says Nick Sepulvado, a manager at Jack Holder’s Restaurant in San Jose.
“Every time I wake up and check my phone, someone else has COVID. Someone’s wife has COVID. Someone’s kid has COVID. It’s just the unfortunate reality we’re living in right now,” he said.
Business owners say the staffing shortages would be even more of a hardship if sadly their customers weren’t staying away as well.MORE NEWS: Hazardous Sneaker Waves Threaten San Francisco Beachcombers
“From the first of the year up until now, we’re off about 20 percent in the first 11 days of January. And 20 percent is a pretty significant number,” says owner Dan Holder.