Two states were added to New Jersey’s travel advisory for the coronavirus that asks people traveling from or returning to the Garden State to quarantine for 14 days, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Tuesday.
California and Massachusetts were added to the list. There are now 41 states and territories considered COVID-19 hot spots.
“Cases have continued to increase at alarming rates, in our state and across the country and it is imperative that we keep the spread of COVID-19 under control,” Murphy said in a statement.
California is back on the list after it was removed on Sept. 15.
The updated advisory was announced a week after Murphy’s office said New Jerseyans didn’t need to quarantine when traveling to neighboring states like Pennsylvania and Delaware — even though all three of the states meet the criteria to be on the advisory.
Unrestricted travel is also allowed to New York and Connecticut, which are the two other states New Jersey agreed to issue a joint advisory with when the plan was announced in June. But governors from each of the states urged people to limit travel unless it’s necessary.
New Jersey has met the criteria used for its joint travel advisory for a little more than a week as numbers of new cases continue to rise. The advisory applies to any state or territory with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or those with a 10% or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average.
The Garden State is averaging 1,254 cases each day based on provisional daily numbers reported by state health officials as of Monday. That’s higher by more than 300 average cases the prior week.
With the state’s 8.8 million population, anything over an average 888 new cases daily would push the state above the 10 cases per 100,000 threshold. New Jersey’s positivity rate as of Friday, the most recent day available, was 5.17% of tests.
Officials on Tuesday reported 1,663 more COVID-19 cases and 14 additional deaths, marking the 10th straight day of more than 1,000 new positive tests — something the state hasn’t seen happen since early May. The Garden State’s COVID-19 hospitalizations were above 900 for the second straight day and the statewide rate of transmission increased again, to 1.26, above the critical benchmark of 1 that shows the outbreak here is expanding.
CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES: Live map tracker | Newsletter | Homepage
Business travel has always been exempt from the quarantine advisory.
The quarantine, for New Jersey, is voluntary and there are other exceptions for people just passing through, but “compliance is expected,” according to state officials.
The advisory now includes:
- Alabama (added 6/24/20)
- Alaska (re-added 9/1/20)
- Arizona (re-added 10/20/20)
- Arkansas (added 6/24/20)
- California (re-added 1027/20)
- Colorado (added 9/29/20)
- Florida (added 6/24/20)
- Georgia (added 6/30/20)
- Guam (added 8/25/20)
- Idaho (added 6/30/20)
- Illinois (added 7/28/20)
- Indiana (added 7/21/20)
- Iowa (added 6/30/20)
- Kansas (added 7/7/20)
- Kentucky (added 7/28/20)
- Louisiana (added 6/30/20)
- Maryland (re-added 10/20/20)
- Massachusetts (added 10/27/20)
- Michigan (added 10/13/20)
- Minnesota (re-added 9/22/20)
- Mississippi (added 6/30/20)
- Missouri (added 7/21/20)
- Montana (re-added 9/1/20)
- Nebraska (added 7/21/20)
- Nevada (re-added 9/22/20)
- New Mexico (re-added 10/6/20)
- North Carolina (added 6/24/20)
- North Dakota (added 7/21/20)
- Ohio (re-added 10/13/20)
- Oklahoma (added 7/7/20)
- Puerto Rico (re-added 9/15/20)
- Rhode Island (re-added 9/22/20)
- South Carolina (added 6/24/20)
- South Dakota (added 8/11/20)
- Tennessee (added 6/30/20)
- Texas (added 6/24/20)
- Utah (added 6/24/20)
- Virginia (re-added 10/13/20)
- West Virginia (added 9/8/20)
- Wisconsin (added 7/14/20)
- Wyoming (added 9/22/20)
People flying into New Jersey are asked to fill out an electronic survey with information about where they live, where they traveled from, and their destination. The information is then sent to county health departments, who will call the traveler to request them to self-quarantine and explain where they can be tested for COVID-19.
Travelers can access the survey by texting “NJ Travel” to 898211, visiting covid19.nj.gov/njtravel, or scanning a QR code on posters at airports.
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Matt Arco may be reached at email@example.com.