By Mugo Odigwe

CHICAGO (CBS) — The brutal temps are forcing some changes in Chicago’s COVID-19 testing program.

And making it miserable for anyone walking to work.

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CBS 2’s Mugo Odigwe caught up with a few folks wishing for warmer climates. Because it’s weather only a snowman would love. And it’s something we’ll all have to deal with for days.

“I hate it. I wish I was in Cancun somewhere,” said Elidia Camarillo.

“I don’t know whether I like it being warmer and more snow, or the fact that there’s no snow, but it’s brutally cold,” added Mike Augle.

Throughout the Loop, people are bundled up with hats, coats, gloves and then some.

“The mask obviously helps right now, because obviously the breath is a little warm on the face,” said Augle.

And at least they are going to work in a warm building.

Not so much for these guys. Their job means having to stand outside for hours in the cold, directing traffic in the business district downtown. But the cold is stopping some city workers, who spend long hours outdoors.

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Starting Friday through Wednesday outdoor COVID testing sites in Chicago will close. And some outdoor mass vaccination sites beyond Chicago, like up north in Lake County are doing their best to adapt, including adding additional staff.

“It’s for the people outside directing traffic so those individuals we’re going to need to make sure they’re switching out every 20 to 30 minutes so that they’re not exposed in that cold weather for long periods,” said Mark Pfister, Executive Director of the Lake County Health Department.

In the meantime, if you live in Chicago and need a place to stay warm during the week, the city has six warming centers. They are open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays.

Cook County has 10 in the suburbs, but hours may vary.

“Bundle up. I called my son, I’m like turn on your car leave it on for an hour because it’s freezing cold,” said Camarillo.

Also, check on your neighbors, especially the elderly.

Click here if you need more information on the warming sites in the area.

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