This weekend, kicking off on Thursday and running through Sunday, hundreds of thousands of people will flock into Chicago in order to attend one of the biggest music festivals in the world, Lollapalooza. From August 1-4 this year, Chicago will be packed with festival-goers as they prepare to watch some of their favorite artists perform at Grant Park. Currently, it is expected that approximately 400,000 people will be attending the music festival. Although Lollapalooza will be an exciting event for all attendees, it also means a significant amount of more traffic and safety risks. Expect a surge in both public transportation and ride-sharing, as well as simply seeing more people wandering the streets of Chicago this weekend.
With heightened safety concerns at such large gatherings, the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications Executive Director, Rich Guidice, said on Monday, “We’ve probably had at least 12 meetings with Lollapalooza this year, and met with them twice yesterday and spoke to them twice already this morning.” The city is determined to provide festival-goers with as much safety and security as possible, citing those as the top priorities of this year’s music festival.
One of the most popular modes of transportation this weekend will most likely be ride-sharing, as attendees head to Grant Park to participate in the festivities. Below is a list of ways to stay safe this weekend.
- Ride-Sharing Safety
As mentioned in a previous post, anyone who realizes they shouldn’t be driving, or simply decides that calling a ride-share would be better than having to concern themselves with driving, should also make sure to note what safety precautions to take when it comes to ride-sharing. Always make sure to check your ride-share driver’s license plate and car information to make sure that they match up with what is stated on your ride-sharing app.
- Don’t Drink and Drive
Please remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Although already a heavily regulated rule, with all 50 states and D.C. having set laws defining driving while impaired as a crime if a driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reaches a specific level or above (.08 percent at this time), this remains a rule that should go without saying.
- Remember to fasten your seat belt
According to the CDC, “seat belt use is one of the most effective ways to save lives and reduce injuries in crashes.” While enjoying the festivities of this weekend, remember to make your safety and that of others a top priority.
- Vehicle Maintenance
Getting behind the wheel while impaired is not the only concern people should have during this festival. If you know that you will be driving during the festivities of this weekend, make sure that your vehicle is in proper condition to be out on the road. Read about the dangers a lack of vehicle maintenance can cause here.
Although e-scooters in Chicago are still limited to certain areas of the city, those with access to these e-scooters should remember that just because it isn’t a car, no one under the influence should be using one of these scooters for transportation. Despite having just been introduced to Chicago in the past few weeks, the pilot program has already brought on a variety of complaints. This Lollapalooza weekend, it is important to remember that these scooters need to be used responsibly to help avoid injury to yourself as well as others.
- Divvy Bikes
Similar to the e-scooters, if you choose to ride a Divvy bike on your way home, make sure that you are in the proper condition to do so. Inebriated biking or scootering, especially in the city, could lead to just as devastating of results as drunk driving.
- Texting while Driving
Despite the fact that everyone should already know that texting should always be avoided at any point when someone is behind the wheel, with the recent law on texting while driving having kicked in on July 1, 2019, this is a reminder that texting and driving is incredibly dangerous and will also most likely incur a significant fee for anyone willing to risk it.
- Pedestrian Safety
Drivers should always keep an eye out for pedestrians. Drivers have a duty to look out for other cars, as well as people crossing the street on foot. With so many people headed downtown this weekend to enjoy the Lollapalooza festivities, motorists should be on the lookout for people on foot as well as other vehicles in order to avoid crashes.
As Chicago prepares to embrace the Lollapalooza festivities this weekend, we hope everyone makes sure to do so in a safe manner. Keep an eye out for drunk drivers and be sure to report them to the police immediately. The more drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists feel inclined to report road safety issues, the safer we make our community. Having said all of that, we hope everyone has a wonderful Lollapalooza weekend!!!