CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago has added Kentucky, Nevada, Texas, and Wyoming to the list of states and territories covered by the city’s emergency travel order, which requires people to self-quarantine for 14 days after arriving from COVID-19 hotspots.
It’s the first time Wyoming is on the list, but Kentucky, Nevada, and Texas have been included before, and later removed, as their infection rates have fluctuated. The changes to the list will go into effect on Friday, when the emergency travel order will cover 23 states and territories: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
States and territories are added to the city’s list when they have more than 15 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 resident population, per day, over a 7-day rolling average.
The Chicago Department of Public Health said Georgia might be removed from the list next week, after getting their daily case average under 15 cases per 100,000 population. If they keep their rate below 15 through next week, they’ll be removed from the quarantine list.
Chicago’s quarantine mandate requires anyone who is arriving in the city from states considered to be COVID-19 hot spots to self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days when they arrive in the city, including visitors to Chicago, and residents who are returning from travel to one of the states. The list of states included in the order is updated weekly to include states with more than 15 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 resident population, per day, over a 7-day rolling average.
Essential workers are exempt from the quarantine mandate if they must travel for work, but should only leave home for work, and avoid public spaces as much as possible.
Exceptions also apply for those leaving home for medical treatment, or parental shared custody reasons; and for people for whom self-quarantine “is not possible, practicable or advisable.”
Travelers who are just passing through designated states for less than 24 hours are not required to self-isolate when they arrive in Chicago, but if a state on the list is their final destination on a trip, they must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival to Chicago, even if they were in that state for less than 24 hours.
For Wisconsin, the order applies for people from Wisconsin traveling to Chicago for non-work purposes and to Chicagoans returning from Wisconsin, unless they are deemed an essential worker. People who travel to Wisconsin, even if for less than 24 hours, still need to quarantine upon returning unless deemed an essential worker.
While people who violate the quarantine order can face fines of $100-$500 per day, up to $7,000, enforcement is almost entirely on the honor system. CDPH Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady has said officials are focusing on encouraging people to change their travel patterns, and to delay trips unless they’re absolutely necessary.
Although the city has issued warning letters to people they know have violated the quarantine order, officials have not issued any fines.