Philadelphia city officials warn the public to continue social distancing measures outdoors

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- With the recent trend in warm weather, many people are taking advantage of the sun and getting outside; however, city officials say it's important to still practice social distancing measures.

Brian Heilman of Center City said, "I waited till about what 3 o'clock to come out so there would be fewer people. I've learned from trying to run along the river that it can get a little crowded."

Saturday, crowds of people packed along Kelly Drive and many around the Philadelphia Art Museum.

With the warm weather, city officials expect large crowds to be out, but they also expect people to keep their social distance from one another.

"We're dining out tonight," said Gianna Ragnacci, who was eating sushi outside at Rittenhouse Square Park with four other friends.

"We consider it, if we're in the same group, and don't go out of this group, then we consider this social distancing," said Ragnacci. "But once we're out, then we keep the masks on."

City officials say you should stay at least 6 feet away from people not in your household, and call people on the phone instead of visiting them in person.

"We have seen people who are asymptomatic but can spread COVID-19, so if you're wearing a mask, it's the best way to contain it," said Aditi Rao, a nurse.

Shawn Puri, who is a doctor says that's why people need to wear a face covering and keep their distance when outside.

"We're not necessarily out of the woods, so we need to do better and try to keep these regulations in place," said Puri.

Some city billboards are displaying "stay at home" messaging with an audio recorded message from Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw.

The city also deployed trucks to drive around Philadelphia and play that message, telling city dwellers to stay home, and if they do go out, to keep a social distance.

"For us, as a family, we limit our outings as one outing a day and the kids all have their child-size masks," said Benjamin Leavenworth of Washington Square.
Many city dwellers say it's nice to see the sun Saturday after being cooped up in their apartments all week working from home.

"Being such a nice day out where it's like not too warm, it's actually perfect weather. I think they're doing pretty well for what I've seen so far," said Nate Fonseka of Fishtown.

Experts say It's okay to get outside for your mental health but stresses the importance of social distancing.

These measures are not only for sitting at a park but also for people who are out running and walking.
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