COVID-19

Do You Live in a Viral Hotspot? 2 States Added to Tri-State Quarantine List; 33 Areas Affected

New York state is in the middle of a 25-day streak with a daily COVID test positivity rate below 1 percent; even the city, the former epicenter of the national crisis, consistently reports daily positivity rates below 1 percent

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What to Know

  • The governors of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut implemented a joint quarantine restriction in late June on travelers from viral hotspot states; travelers from certain states must self-isolate for 14 days
  • The number of restricted states and U.S. jurisdictions stands at 33, with Alaska and Montana being re-added and no states removed
  • New York has maintained a low infection rate despite its phased regional reopenings; its in the midst of a 25-day streak of daily COVID positivity test rates below 1 percent

Alaska and Montana found themselves back on the tri-state quarantine list Tuesday while no states were removed, bringing the total number of restricted states and U.S. territories to 33, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.

The restricted-states list, a joint effort initially announced in late June by Cuomo, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, requires travelers to the tri-state area from viral hotspots to quarantine for 14 days. Hotspots are defined as areas that have experienced a seven-day rolling COVID test positivity average of 10 percent or higher. By comparison, New York state is in the middle of a 25-day streak with a positivity rate below 1 percent.

As of Tuesday, 10 states, plus Guam and the Virgin Islands are still experiencing a percentage increase in COVID cases over the last 14 days, NBC News reports. New cases are at a plateau in 20 states, while another 20 states plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico are seeing some type of percentage decrease.

The current list of restricted states and U.S. territories includes the following: Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, the Virgin Islands and Wisconsin.

Daily Percentage of Positive Tests by New York Region

With all of New York state in some phase of reopening, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is shifting his focus to monitoring test results on a daily basis across each region to identify potential hotspots before they emerge. Here's the latest tracking data by region. For the latest county-level results statewide, click here

Source: ny.gov

Heavy fines are possible -- at least in New York -- for travelers who do not self-isolate. To help with enforcement, Cuomo requires those landing at New York airports to fill out a contact form. If they don't, they may get a $2,000 fine. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio amped up the road enforcement last month, imposing checkpoints at key city entry points. Drivers are pulled over at random and asked to fill out one of the contact forms if the quarantine applies.

He also signed an executive order requiring hotels to deny travelers room access if they refuse to submit a form -- and reminded New Yorkers returning home from viral hotspots that they too need to quarantine. The city has said up to 20 percent of its COVID cases stem from recent travel.

New York has added COVID testing sites at JFK and LaGuardia airports as part of the state's ongoing effort to limit travel-related virus spread, Cuomo said.

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