WGN-TV

Pritzker announces new COVID-19 restrictions for Illinois as state sees a second wave of cases

CHICAGO — Saying Illinois is facing a new “Covid storm,” Governor JB Pritzker announced additional COVID-19 restrictions for all of Illinois Tuesday as the state faces a second wave of the pandemic that’s sweeping the globe.

“As fall approached we began to see an upsurge, and now we are seeing a Covid storm that has set us on a course to a new wave of the virus that we all hoped wouldn’t come,” Pritzker said. “But if you look at our new trajectories of Covid hospitalizations, cases and deaths, it’s clear that it’s here.”

All of Illinois will move to Tier 3 of COVID-19 restrictions starting at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, which Pritzker said is not a stay-at-home order but aims to get people to stay home as much as possible.

The order comes as the coronavirus pandemic is putting a crunch on hospital staffing across Illinois and the U.S., forcing many hospital systems to push back elective surgeries.

Under the order, casinos and gaming locations are closed in addition to “indoor recreation centers” like theaters, performing arts centers, indoor museums and amusement centers. Indoor service at bars and restaurants is not permitted, while both must end outdoor service by 11 p.m.

It also “pauses” all indoor sports leagues including youth sports, while outdoor sports and recreation are allowed under some restrictions.

Social events in the home are limited to household members only, while event spaces are not allowed to host indoor gatherings of any kind. People are generally advised to limit their interactions to their household only.

WATCH ABOVE: Governor JB Pritzker announces new “Tier 3” COVID-19 restrictions in Illinois Tuesday

Businesses including gyms, salons, “big box” stores and other retail stores must limit their capacity to 25% or less, although grocery stores and pharmacies can operate up to 50% capacity.

“Tier 3 boils down to this: if you don’t need to do it, don’t,” Pritzker said.

The restrictions from the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website are all listed below.

Retail (including service counters)

Personal Care Service

Health and Fitness Centers

Hotels

Manufacturing

Bars and Restaurants

Meetings, social events and gatherings (including weddings, potlucks, etc.)

Office

Organized group recreational activities (sports, indoor sports and activity facilities, etc.)

Indoor recreation, theaters, cultural Institutions (e.g. casinos, bowling, arcades, movie theaters, museums and zoos)