Five more states, including Ohio, were added to Chicago’s travel quarantine order while none were removed, city officials announced Tuesday.
Starting Friday, travelers heading from Colorado, Ohio, Delaware, West Virginia and Texas will be subject to the city’s two-week quarantine requirement, according to a news release. For the Lone Star state, this week will be the third time Chicago has added it to its travel order.
Last week, the city placed Indiana on its list for the first time, ensuring all four states bordering Illinois are part of the order. A state gets placed on the list if it averages more than 15 new daily COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents over a seven-day period.
The 31 states and territories that will be covered by the order on Friday will be: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
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In the news release, the city warned that cases only decreased in six states over the past week — and Chicago and Illinois are part of a nationwide trend of places losing ground in combating the virus.
“Public health officials say this is a sign that we all need to double down on COVID precautions: wearing a mask, washing your hands frequently, practicing social distancing, limiting interaction with those not in your COVID ‘bubble’ and staying home if sick,” the news release said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s self-quarantine requirement was implemented during the Fourth of July weekend. People who have spent more than 24 hours in the high-risk states are required to self-quarantine for 14 days after entering Chicago. Though the order is generally not being enforced aside from signs and billboards telling people that they must self-quarantine, violators are subject to fines of $100 to $500 per day, up to $7,000.
Exceptions to the self-quarantine order include essential workers, those traveling for medical treatment and those for whom “self-quarantine is not possible, practicable or advisable.” The order also does not apply to people who are at the airport for a connecting flight or are driving through the city on their way elsewhere.
People who commute across the Wisconsin and Indiana state lines to or from Chicago to work or go to school will be exempt from the quarantine rule. But for everyone else, “Chicago residents are strongly advised to not travel to these states,” the news release said.
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