By Tara Molina


(CBS) — Chicagoans are taking no chances, with a confirmed case of a new form of corona virus here.

CBS 2’s Tara Molina found people were canceling their Chinese New Year plans and taking extra precautions–the Walgreens in Chinatown was completely out of face masks by 10 a.m.

A case of the virus was confirmed in Chicago, one of only two so far in the United States. In China, more than 40 people have died and thousands are infected with the respiratory illness.

Businesses owners say fears about the virus are already affecting Lunar new year celebrations.

Red lanterns, rain and people wearing masks to walk, eat and shop.

That’s Chinatown this Lunar New Year’s Eve.

This year, the big holiday is being celebrated differently.

Because of the coronavirus.

Local business owner Huan Wang told us massive celebrations were canceled in China and Chicago.

Wang is a partner in a Chinatown restaurant and two others.

He says with a confirmed case of the virus in Chicago, many are changing their New Year’s plans.

“My friend who has a restaurant down the street, he was planning on having 40 people come in today, but actually they called him to say the table will be canceled. Because some people got sick or some people are afraid of going out.”

And he told us they’re taking special precautions too, more than doubling their cleaning and sanitizing regimen in the restaurant.

And while he believes there’s no reason to be afraid, he understand the concerns about a virus we still don’t know a lot about.

“I do understand that people might be a little afraid of going out,” Wang said. “They don’t know where they should go, what they should worry about.”

Tara Molina