Warm weather sweeps over Chicago this week, the warmest since October of last year. For residents, warm weather in Chicago ordinarily means street fests, trips to the park, patio seating, and enjoying the Midwestern sunshine. However, under the threat of a global pandemic, spring life sees change. In response, the Chicago Police Department operates check points throughout the city to remind people of the danger of covid-19.
The CPD refers to them as “Roadside Safety and Informational Check Points.” They began operating them Tuesday night, and will continue Wednesday and Thursday nights for 45 minutes sometime between 10 pm and 2 am.
Police officers hand out informational flyers. They contain important covid-19 facts and tips. The focus of the checkpoints remains education. Police don’t intend to request essential reasons for travel nor issue any citations.
The check points come at a time when city and state officials urge residents to stay at home. The weather inspires Chicagoans to venture out and enjoy fresh air. In light of that desire, government leaders hope to impart the wisdom of social distancing to their constituents.
Check Points Don’t Stop People From Getting Out
Still, people decided to get out of the house Tuesday. Temperatures topped out at 79 degrees at O’Hare, unseasonably warm and pleasant for April.
Most adhered to social distancing policies while taking time to stretch their legs. ABC7 reported on residents in Wicker Park keeping their distance from one another. They also mentioned Buckingham Fountain near the lakefront remained largely empty of visitors.
However, the day was not without incident. An football game popped up at 61st and Stony Island, which police broke up. Though, a basketball game by 29th and Calumet proceeded uninhibited.
Mostly, people minded their space and kept to the guidelines. Chicagoans know bouts of nice weather generally don’t last and prefer to take advantage when they can.
Rain dominates the forecast Wednesday evening into Thursday, bringing with it colder temperatures. Tuesday’s respite was a brief glimmer in an otherwise glum April.