Skip to main content

Once among the best, Minnesota now gets a 'D' grade for social distancing

To be fair, most other states are doing badly too.
Screen Shot 2020-05-07 at 1.04.26 PM

Data that tracks cellphone movements anonymously appears to affirm the anecdotal evidence that Minnesotans aren't social distancing as much as they were.

Around six weeks ago, Minnesota was among the few states with an "A" grade for social distancing, with Unacast finding substantial drops in travel in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic's outbreak.

Fast-forward to this week, and Minnesota has dropped to a "D" grade, with Unacast finding that Minnesotans' travel has only dropped by 25-40 percent statewide, compared to just over 45 percent in March.

The same situation is apparent across the U.S., with the majority of states getting a "D" grade or lower (the national average is D-), with only a handful – including both Dakotas – reducing their travel enough to warrant a grade at the "C" level.

The Unacast data now also includes metrics for "non-essential" travel – that is, travel to restaurants, non-essential retail stores including electronics and office supply, as well as car dealerships and hotels.

Minnesota got an "F" grade for "non-essential travel" as of May 5.

That said, while nobody likes a "D" grade, it doesn't necessarily mean the majority of Minnesotans are being reckless with the virus around.

The data for the state shows that travel has inched up this past week, which is probably not surprising given that the past week has since restrictions loosened on retail businesses to allow more curbside pick-up services.

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

A week before that, most non-customer-facing commercial and industrial businesses were allowed to re-open, no doubt contributing to Minnesota's overall travel, so the situation now compared to March is markedly different, with state officials satisfied they're able to slowly reopen the state now that its health system has more capacity.

Nonetheless, there are some counties that are faring better than others in terms of travel.

The best performing counties in the state, getting "B" grade are Cook, Koochiching, Pipestone and Redwood Counties.

The worst performers include the Twin Cities metro counties of Washington, Carver, Scott, Anoka and Dakota, which get "F" grades after their travel reduced by less than 25 percent.

Hennepin County got a C- grade.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2022-05-13 at 9.24.48 AM

DFL efforts to pass abortion, reproductive health bills blocked in Senate

The push to pass a slate of abortion and healthcare-related bills comes after a leaked Supreme Court opinion draft indicated Roe v Wade will be overturned.

Screen Shot 2022-05-13 at 8.16.56 AM

Teen hospitalized after going missing for 40 mins in St. Croix River

The teen was located around 40 minutes after he had gone under water.

Screen Shot 2022-05-13 at 7.23.52 AM

Thursday performances of Runestone! canceled due to COVID cases

This weekend's performances are still going ahead, History Theatre says.

Screen Shot 2022-05-12 at 7.12.27 PM

Storms cause grain bin to fall, killing one in Kandiyohi County

The National Weather Service confirmed the death on Thursday evening.

FSmb9kkWAB0UBqk

Ferocious winds, possible tornadoes leave destruction in MN

Numerous reports of tornadoes and nearly 100 mph straight-line winds.

canoe

Canoe carrying 4 overturns near St. John's University

Of the four, only one was wearing a lifejacket when the boat capsized Wednesday.

pexels beer bar craft brewery

MN's craft alcohol makers back new push to loosen state's liquor laws

The pushback includes loosening restrictions on growler sales for bigger craft breweries and a more direct line of spirit sales to customers.

Screen Shot 2022-05-12 at 8.02.19 PM

Severe thunderstorm warnings in the Twin Cities

It's the second night in a row that severe storms are hitting the metro.

storm

Twin Cities placed in tornado watch ahead of intense line of storms

Photo above is a view from Marshall as the line of storms moved through Thursday evening.

fire pixabay stock

1 dead, 1 escapes western Wisconsin house fire

The single-story home was fully engulfed in flames when first responders arrived early Wednesday morning.

Wind storms tree

Rare 'particularly dangerous situation' weather watch issued in SW MN

The warning covers an area of Minnesota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Related

49692426881_39cc5a09c7_k

Coronavirus: Are Minnesotans cutting back on social distancing?

There's been an apparent increase in activity despite the Stay at Home order.

Screen Shot 2020-04-17 at 2.58.26 PM

Gov. Walz: 'If you're going to protest, social distance'

The governor also provided a response to President Trump's latest tweet.

coronavirus, masks, covid-19

With end of Stay at Home, Walz puts responsibility on Minnesotans

He is imploring Minnesotans to stick with social distancing guidelines.

coronavirus, masks, covid-19

Stay Safe: Health officials provide more guidance on small gatherings

Gatherings of 10 or fewer people will be permitted from Monday.

Gov. Time Walz

Gov. Walz to let Stay at Home expire, extends peacetime emergency

The peacetime emergency is being extended to June 12.

mask

CDC recommends wearing a fabric mask if social distancing can't be maintained

The CDC is urging Americans to wear fabric masks in places where it's hard to maintain distance from others.

Governor Tim Walz

Gov. Tim Walz extends Stay at Home order till May 18, with changes

The governor confirmed the order's extension during his Thursday press conference.