Rising cases of COVID-19 are prompting Manheim to delay reintroducing in-lane bidders at three auction sites in Florida.
The Cox Automotive-owned auction operator planned to allow bidders to return to Manheim Central Florida, Manheim Lakeland and Manheim Orlando next week, after doing so at five pilot locations in Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas this week.
Florida has record daily increases in reported cases of the virus this week.
"As safety is our top priority, we delayed the pilot of in-lane bidding at those three Florida locations due to rising pandemic levels in the area," Alan Lang, Manheim division vice president, said in an emailed statement.
Manheim and KAR Global's ADESA said on March 16 they would switch to digital-only auctions, as the virus outbreak began triggering stay-at-home orders in some parts of the U.S.
Some independent auctions continued to operate with buyers in lanes throughout the height of the pandemic, depending on where they were located.
ADESA brought in-lane bidders back several weeks ago, starting with seven locations. It was expected to be up to 28 locations this week.
For each company, the number of buyers allowed at each auction site will be determined by local or state ordinances and the size of the locations. Even where in-lane bidding is allowed, both companies are still not running vehicles through the lanes, instead showing them on large screens.