Chicago officials say they shut down a 300-person party early Sunday for violating coronavirus restrictions as the city tries to get its Covid-19 surge under control.
The Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) said in a statement that it had conducted 93 investigations over the weekend as part of a task force formed to crack down on large gatherings under the city’s Covid-19 regulations.
Since October 30, Chicago has banned indoor dining and drinking under state-imposed measures to mitigate the spread of coronavirus.
The city said it received a complaint about a party in a basement that happened early Sunday morning.
“The Task Force issued multiple citations, Cease and Desist Orders and closure orders to The Vault/All Access for throwing a dangerous and unlicensed commercial party with approximately 300 attendees, no social distancing and no face coverings,” the BAPC said.
The Vault/All Access received nine citations for violating the Covid-19 regulations and five cease-and-desist orders for illegal business activity, according to the release.
The city’s Department of Buildings also ordered the site closed for “dangerous and hazardous conditions, including no smoke alarms, no carbon monoxide detectors, no fire extinguishers.”
There here have been at least 13.5 million cases of Covid-19 in the United States and at least 268,045 US deaths from the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tally. Cook County, of which Chicago is the seat, has had 304,220 cases and more than 6,500 deaths, Johns Hopkins says.
A record-high of 96,039 Covid-19 patients were hospitalized across the US as of Monday evening, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker said at a media briefing Monday that mitigation measures in his state would not be lowered for the next weeks as any Thanksgiving effect was evaluated.
“The number of patients fighting Covid-19 in our hospital systems statewide still eclipses our spring peak by 23%,” Pritzker said. “The dip in Illinois’ cases over the last few days comes as we are seeing near record-high numbers of hospitalizations – meaning that our ability to handle any new surge in Covid patients is still limited. If we are not especially careful right now the surge will overwhelm our state’s health care system.”
Chicago isn’t the only city targeting parties in violation of coronavirus restrictions.
In New York City, a 400-person party was forced to close over the weekend.
The Manhattan bottle club was shut down around 2:45 a.m. ET Saturday after city sheriffs discovered about 400 revelers, the New York City Sheriff’s office said.
The club, between Manhattan’s Midtown and Garment District neighborhoods, violated emergency orders and had no liquor license, the sheriff’s office said.
Four organizers were charged with “offenses for penal, health, alcohol beverage control laws,” according to a tweet from the sheriff’s office.
CNN’s Anna Sturla contributed to this report.