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As tropical storm Dorian bore down on Puerto Rico last month, its whirling winds threatening to reach hurricane force, a team of Walmart employees watched closely from an array of screens at the retailer’s Arkansas headquarters 2,000 miles away.
Had the severity grown to crisis levels, Lucas McDonald, a former TV weatherman who leads the chain’s emergency operations, might have called in dozens of workers to support the handful who are posted at the division’s command center in 24/7 shifts.