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Are Colorado residents taking new ‘Safer at Home’ order too far?

(COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.) Colorado's transition from the strict "Stay at Home" order to the new "Safer at Home" order allows for slightly relaxed restrictions as protection from the coronavirus pandemic.

But are people taking advantage of the situation?

On Monday, a KRDO NewsChannel 13 crew found brisk business at stores and big crowds at parks, but few or no people were wearing breathing masks that are still strongly recommended.

It was also common to see people standing closer than the required minimum distance of six feet.

Some people said they don't see a need to wear masks because they avoid getting too close to anyone else.

"We're being careful," said Amber Johnson. "But it's a nice day and we've been cooped up at home for a month. We've got to get out for some fresh air and exercise."

But Jason Parks expressed a concern shared by many others -- that people are using the new order as a reason to return to normal lifestyles and behaviors while contracting or transmitting the virus remains a risk.

"The worst thing that could happen is this leads to another wave of infections and we go right back to the stricter order," he said. "But it's like everything else with this virus, there's so much we still don't know. We'll just have to wait and see how this new order works out."

Some residents said they were surprised at the size of crowds at many attractions Monday, such as Helen Hunt Falls, where cars filled the parking lots, lined both sides of the road and traffic was heavy.

Yet some people, like Rudolph Martinez, of Pueblo, continue to be cautious.

"I think because we all have this modified cabin fever, people are excited to be out," he said. "But I could see that people are still apprehensive. And we have our masks with us if we need them."

Some apartment complexes -- particularly those with elderly tenants -- banned visitors and interior deliveries during the "Stay at Home" order, but one manager said she's willing to ease those restrictions under the new order.

"This has been a very difficult time," she said. "If people use common sense and continue social distancing, I'm open to whatever they're comfortable with."

In a related matter, the New York-based owner of the Citadel and Chapel Hills malls in Colorado Springs began allowing tenants and employees into those facilities Monday, and revealed a plan to eventually provide curbside retail service to customers.

Scott Harrison

Scott is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Scott here.



  1. Good. This has been blown way out of control. CNN and Cuomo have even stated that about 25 percent of new Yorkers have already been exposed to the virus with little to no symptoms. LA county reports 55 times higher infections than they originally thought with little to no symptoms. If you’re old and have pre-consisting conditions, stay home or wear a mask. It’s already been proven you have a 95 percent chance of not needing assistance from a hospital.

    1. “Little or no symptoms” doesn’t translate to harmless. Those asymptomatic people can still infect others, who may react differently and ultimately die from the virus.
      Also, “pre-existing conditions” is the main problem when it comes to the likelihood of complications from the virus. Age is often factored in because many older people have the pre-existing conditions, but many older people have survived, while many younger people have died. It’s still something of a crap shoot, where the house (or in this case the virus) has the advantage, and you won’t know until you lose your last chips.

  2. Oh, no. Keep the country closed.This virus is so deadly. We need to stay quarantined for many more months or maybe even years.

      1. Going too far? The article here makes it sound some are. If we incrementally stage things up in phases, the obvious (and stated) plan is to do so safely which we all know is continued distancing and masks. Times we cannot maintain safe distancing should be 100% mask or scarf. Maybe it’s tough to enforce but the IQ of the general public will be on full display.

        1. People wrapped in bubble wrap outside are 8000% more likely to be sex trafficked than people inside,

  3. 701,000 RESIDENTS IN ELPASO COUNTY…….867 CASES…..less than 1%….whatever. people need to relax.

    1. The lockdown has nothing to do with saving lives. It is all about keeping the hospitals from being overwhelmed. The only way to know if the lockdown worked is to go back in time and don’t do a lockdown and compare the results. I think CO should do a wide open unlockdown and see what happens. See if there is a spike. I think I had COVID-19 back in December.

    2. Um, you do realize that 701,000 have not been tested in El Paso county right? In fact, only 65k in the ENTIRE STATE have been tested. So everyone else could potentially be carrying the virus. But you do whatever you want, hope you don’t contract the virus.

      1. your right but by that logic you COULD walk outside and get hit with a falling rock from space…..unlikely but possible.

  4. Well i see they do not care about social distancing , as i already new by going to the store. women do not care at rats behind about the controlling of the virus they just want out to go shopping , shopping, shopping . but remember women your husband probably did not make as much or if any money for you to spend

  5. The masks are to protect OTHERS from getting the virus from you. Telling people to stay home and wear a mask around others to avoid getting sick is incorrect. A huge percentage of the population is carrying the virus without knowing they have it and can pass it along by coughing, sneezing, touching things.

  6. I’m surprised the Brownshirts of KRDO didn’t perform citizens arrest of everyone they saw *GASP* out in PUBLIC!

    On further reflection, that would be more directly confrontational than KRDO Brownshirt have the backbone for. No, instead they’ll dox them all and send them anonymous death threats — that’s more in line with KRDO’s “principles”.

    Heil Shuzlie , uh Polis!

    1. Your bigotry is showing. You really hate having a gay, liberal governor, don’t you?

  7. There will inevitably be many more localized infections, as there is no cure and unless you are independently wealthy (i.e., can afford to pay others to take the risks) then you can’t provide for your health and well-being without going out among the potentially asymptomatic people. Your government has done all it can for you – which admittedly is next to nothing, so its time to either live your life or end it.

  8. Ok so I get it. Most people have been exposed. Yes it’s not as deadly as the flu. Great. But the issue with opening back up isn’t about healthy people who can fight it. It’s about those that can’t. That small percent that this can kill. Look at it this way, if you have a bag of candy, and two of them are poisonous, would you still eat the candy? No. Same thing, if this virus kills only 2% it’s not worth the risk

  9. Why is it so hard for you all? If you do not absolutely have to go somewhere, don’t! It’s not that health experts want you to suffer or be bored. It’s the fact that you can save lives of others by reducing how many people you expose yourself to. I don’t care if you are not worried about yourself. You are a crap person if you go out just because you want to. You are a crap person if you do not attempt to use some sort of mask when you do go out in public. Most of our mask only give us about 10% more protection so the mask is not for you. The point of the mask is to protect everyone else around you so please have a little respect and wear something over your face no matter how you personally feel about getting the virus or not. Even a cheap cloth mask is around 90% effective at preventing the virus from leaving your breath as long as it does not have a “cool flow” type exit valve so it does work. About 80% of people who get the virus are contagious well before showing any symptoms at all. Do you really want to be that person who spread it to others and got someone killed? Sadly many of you are already that person.

    1. New findings, published recently in the Annals of Internal Medicine, suggest that neither surgical nor cloth masks are at all effective in stopping the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

      1. Thank you for saying that Joe! There are no experts saying those masks will help. All that they definitely do is obstruct breathing.

  10. The rights of a person who chooses to live in fear does not trump my rights to live.

  11. Covid-19 is about 42 times more deadly than the flu. Underlying conditions include obesity and 22% of Coloradoans are obese. A BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese. Assuming you won’t get it and won’t suffer are selfish and you could be very wrong. Wearing a simple face mask is very easy thing to do compared to staying at home.

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