New York State ‘Highly Discourages’ Travel to Nearly 90% of U.S.
New Yorkers could face a big fine or even jail after traveling to over 75 percent of the country.
On Tuesday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that Arizona and Maryland have been added to New York's COVID-19 travel advisory. No areas have been removed.
The advisory requires individuals who have traveled to New York from areas with significant community spread to quarantine for 14 days. The quarantine applies to any person arriving from an area with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a 7-day rolling average or an area with a 10 percent or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average.
Neighboring states Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania now meet the criteria for the travel advisory, however, according to Cuomo's office, given the interconnected nature of the region and mode of transport between us, a quarantine on these states is not practically viable.
That said, New York State highly discourages, to the extent practical, non-essential travel to and from these states while they meet the travel advisory criteria, officials say.
"We are now in a situation where 43 states meet the criteria for our travel advisory. This is really a bizarre outcome, considering New York once had the highest infection rate," Cuomo said. "There is no practical way to quarantine New York from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut. There are just too many interchanges, interconnections, and people who live in one place and work in the other. It would have a disastrous effect on the economy, and remember while we're fighting this public health pandemic we're also fighting to open up the economy. However, to the extent travel between the states is not essential, it should be avoided."
The full, updated travel advisory list is available below:
The travel advisory also requires any New Yorker to quarantine for 14 days after returning from a state on the quarantine list.
Anyone found violating the quarantine will be subject to a judicial order, placed in a mandatory quarantine and fined, Cuomo added.
“You violate the quarantine, you will have to do mandatory quarantine, and you will be fined," Cuomo said.
According to Cuomo, a person found violating the order could be fined $2,000 for the first violation, $5,000 for a second violation and $10,000 if the person causes "harm."
Cuomo recently announced a travel enforcement operation started at airports across the state to help ensure travelers are following the state's quarantine restrictions and to help contain the rates of COVID-19 transmission in New York State.
Cuomo confirmed travelers will be fined $2,000 if they leave an airport without submitting a contact information form. Information on the form includes contact information and travel plans while in New York. The forms will be handed out online, but can also be filled out online.
The travel advisory doesn't impact essential workers, officials say. Officials also note if you are only passing through a state on the list, meaning you aren't spending more than 24 hours, you also don't have to quarantine.