A majority of US states at the moment are on New York's Covid journey restriction checklist, Cuomo says


Travelers from most states and territories in the United States must now be quarantined upon arrival in New York as coronavirus cases increase across the country, Governor Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.

In a "bizarre finding," people traveling to New York from 43 states and territories now meet the criteria to be quarantined for two weeks upon arrival, Cuomo told reporters on a call.

The coronavirus outbreaks that struck the nation before the holiday season have become so severe that even neighboring Connecticut and New Jersey, which have been able to suppress the virus after spring peaks, are reporting spikes that would put them on the list, Cuomo said in a call with reporters.

Cuomo, along with Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont and New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, initially took on coronavirus travel advice in June to prevent travelers from states with growing outbreaks from spreading the virus to the three-state area .

Although Pennsylvania, Connecticut and New Jersey meet the criteria to be added to the advisory, a quarantine requirement is "impractical" because residents frequently travel between states, Cuomo's office later said in a statement.

"There's no practical way to quarantine New York from New Jersey and Connecticut," Cuomo said on the conference call, adding New York would help them contain their outbreaks.

The travel advisory applies to anyone arriving from a state with a positive test rate of more than 10 per 100,000 residents over a moving average of seven days or a state with a positive rate of 10% or more over a moving average of seven days.

The list of travel advice has grown so long that Lamont is expected to release readjusted metrics for Connecticut that would reduce the number of quarantined states, according to a report by NBC Connecticut.

"It now applies to 43 states. Why? Because New York is doing so much better than the other states, that's exactly what happens," Cuomo said on the call. "The norm in the country is rising. We are not going up as the norm is rising in the country and so they are being quarantined from New York."

More than half of the US states were in the Empire State's travelogue the summer as the Sun Belt states responded to widespread outbreaks.

New York has responded to its own surge in coronavirus cases in "red zones," which reported higher rates of positivity or the overall percentage of tests found positive compared to other parts of the state. The updated positivity rate for the red zone is now 2.9%, Cuomo said, "down sharply" from the point it started.

"The infection rate in our microcluster, our red zone, is lower than the number in most states nationwide," said Cuomo. "What we consider a priority area, a high infection rate, other states do not consider a high infection rate. In fact, most states would welcome the infection rate in our red zones."

These are the states and territories listed in New York's updated travel advisory starting Tuesday: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin , West Virginia and Wyoming.


Steven Gregory