With COVID-19 cases on the rise, New York maintains quarantine requirements for 34 U.S. regions

2d ago

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Editor’s note: This post has been updated to reflect new information, and was first published on June 24, 2020.


Coronavirus is once again on the rise in New York.

During his Sept. 29 COVID-19 update, Governor Andrew Cuomo mentioned rising “clusters” of cases throughout New York’s Brooklyn and Queens boroughs in New York City, as well as Rockland and Orange counties.

As part of the effort to continue fighting the pandemic, Cuomo extended his quarantine against 34 total U.S. territories where incoming travelers must undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine when entering the Empire State. Neighboring New Jersey and Connecticut have similar restrictions in place.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has also set up checkpoints at tunnels and bridges leading into the city in order to enforce the quarantine regulation. Violators will be fined up to $10,000.

In June 2020, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut declared a mandatory 14-day quarantine for travelers entering from regions with heightened rates of COVID-19 cases. The CDC has since removed its recommendations for travelers to self-quarantine for 14 days after returning from travel, and instead advises travelers to follow the guidance of the states or cities they’re traveling to.

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“We now have to make sure that the [COVID-19 infection] rate continues to drop,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a June 24 Facebook live announcement alongside Governors Philip Murphy of New Jersey and Ned Lamont of Connecticut. “We also need to make sure the virus doesn’t come in on a plane.”

Related: A state-by-state guide to reopening

The travel advisory went into effect at midnight Thursday, June 25, and applies to anyone arriving from a state with a 10 percent or higher infection rate increase over a seven-day rolling average.

This week, Arizona and Virginia made it off of the list, while Colorado was added. As of Sept. 29, the 34 total states and territories on New York’s restricted list for mandatory quarantine include:

  1. Alabama
  2. Alaska
  3. Arkansas
  4. Colorado
  5. Delaware
  6. Florida
  7. Georgia
  8. Guam
  9. Idaho
  10. Illinois
  11. Indiana
  12. Iowa
  13. Kansas
  14. Kentucky
  15. Louisiana
  16. Minnesota
  17. Mississippi
  18. Missouri
  19. Montana
  20. Nebraska
  21. Nevada
  22. North Carolina
  23. North Dakota
  24. Oklahoma
  25. Puerto Rico
  26. Rhode Island
  27. South Carolina
  28. South Dakota
  29. Tennessee
  30. Texas
  31. Utah
  32. West Virginia
  33. Wisconsin
  34. Wyoming

While this report has not yet been updated for Sept. 29 as of the time of this publication, you can otherwise use the New York state website to check for up-to-date information.

The New York quarantine measure is designed to curb the second wave of coronavirus infections, which spiked sharply after a number of states reopened their economies. As the situation develops, more regions may be added to the quarantine list.

Related: Las Vegas reopened with major changes

Cuomo stated in mid-June that New York now has “The virus under control — but Florida doesn’t, Texas doesn’t, these other states don’t. And what happens if they get on a plane and they come to JFK? So, we get the infection rate down and then because other states are high, we could have a problem.”

New York state has asked police to check drivers with out-of-state license plates, perform random checks of visitors arriving by air, and has set up a hotline for residents to report offenders. New York is imposing fines of up to $10,000.

Related: Dreaming of a sandy beach? These Caribbean countries are open to U.S. tourists

As of Sept. 29, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has tallied nearly 7.2 million cases and 204,598 U.S. deaths due to COVID-19 — an increase of more than five million cases since the quarantine was levied in late June.

“This [mandatory quarantine] is a smart thing to do,” New Jersey Governor Murphy said in late June, referencing the “hell and back” that residents of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut had experienced over the past three months due to the coronavirus pandemic. “The last thing we need to is subject our folks to another round [of infection].”

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut’s current quarantine restrictions aren’t the first to be levied upon U.S. travelers. A handful of states and cities including Hawaii and Chicago have implemented mandatory quarantines during this pandemic. Meanwhile, Americans have been banned from entering a number of reopening foreign countries including Iceland, Germany and the European Union.

Related: A country-by-country guide to reopening

In August, the State Department revoked its Level 4: Do Not Travel advisory— the highest level of risk warning. Instead, travelers are now encouraged to look at individual country ratings for travel guidance.

Featured photo by Shutterstock.

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