NEW YORK - As the global coronavirus pandemic advanced, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued progressively more serious and restrictive travel alerts for Americans seeking to go abroad. But this weekend, the CDC took the very unusual step in issuing a domestic travel advisory for New York's tristate area.
The CDC urged residents of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut to avoid "non-essential" travel within the United States for two weeks starting March 28. The advisory came after President Trump suggested he might consider ordering a regional quarantine for New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut but later backed away from that.
The CDC on Monday released details about the alert and guidance about what U.S. residents should consider before deciding to travel.
"CDC does not generally issue advisories or restrictions for travel within the United States. However, cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have been reported in all states, and some areas are experiencing community spread of the disease," the CDC said in the advisory. "Crowded travel settings, like airports, may increase chances of getting COVID-19, if there are other travelers with coronavirus infection."
The CDC said the advisory against traveling doesn't apply to employees of what the U.S. Homeland Security Department considers "critical infrastructure industries, including but not limited to trucking, public health professionals, financial services, and food supply."
The agency said that the governors of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut will have "full discretion" to implement the advisory. The governors have indeed told residents to stay home.