Chicago to Update Coronavirus Emergency Travel Order Tuesday – NBC Chicago


Chicago is set to update its emergency travel order on Tuesday, detailing where states currently stand under the guidelines for travelers to quarantine or test negative for COVID-19 prior to their arrival in the city.

In its last update two weeks ago, the city included 26 states in the order’s “orange tier,” which requires a quarantine or pre-arrival negative test before coming to Chicago.

The lesser yellow tier included 23 states as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Which tier states fall into depends on case rate adjusted for population.

Here’s a look at where each state stood as of the last update in March:

  • 23 yellow states and 2 territories: Iowa, Minnesota, Ohio, Mississippi, New Mexico, Indiana, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nevada, Kansas, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Washington, California, Wyoming, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Utah, Arizona, Texas, Nebraska, District of Columbia, and Kentucky
  • 26 orange states: New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Florida, Delaware, Georgia, Connecticut, Colorado, North Carolina, Vermont, Alabama, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, South Carolina, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Alaska, Virginia, New Hampshire, Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, Michigan, West Virginia, Maryland, and Maine

While health officials urged residents to avoid travel if possible, the requirements for each category are as follows:

  • Yellow: States with a rolling 7-day average less than 15 cases/day/100k residents.
    • No quarantine or pre-arrival test required. Maintain strict masking, social distancing and avoidance of in-person gatherings
  • Orange: States have a rolling 7-day average above 15 cases/day/100k residents
    • 10-day quarantine OR pre-arrival negative test no more than 72 hours before arrival in Chicago with strict masking, social distancing and avoidance of in-person gatherings
      or
    • Be fully vaccinated, as defined as two weeks after the second dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine or two weeks after one dose of a single-dose vaccine and not have symptoms

As of Tuesday, both the city of Chicago and the state of Illinois’ coronavirus metrics would place them in the orange tier – though officials have repeatedly said the travel order requirements will not apply to residents of other parts of Illinois who are entering Chicago.

Chicago is seeing a rolling average of 22 new cases per 100,000 residents according to the city’s latest coronavirus data, while the state of Illinois is seeing 16.6 new cases per 100,000 residents – both above the 15 case threshold.

City health officials updated the order in February to exempt anyone fully vaccinated and without COVID-19 symptoms from the quarantine or test requirement to bring the policy in alignment with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the Chicago Department of Public Health.

“Fully vaccinated is defined as being at least two weeks after receipt of the second dose in a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series or at least two weeks after receipt of one dose of a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine,” CDPH said in a statement at the time.

“Fully vaccinated travelers must monitor their health for 14 days after travel and if they experience symptoms potentially consistent with COVID-19, they must self-isolate until clinical evaluation and COVID testing,” CDPH continued. “They also must continue to adhere to all recommended protective measures including wearing a mask (and using job-specific personal protective equipment), maintaining physical distance, practicing hand hygiene, and avoiding crowds.”

Health officials still recommended canceling all non-essential travel, vaccinated or not, and noted in the order’s last update in March that cases in Chicago had gone up in recent weeks.

“Chicago’s case rate has increased in the past few weeks,” CDPH said in a statement on March 23. “This is a time to double down on what we know works to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This includes wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing, washing your hands and staying at home as much as you can.  Chicago residents are strongly advised to cancel non-essential travel.”

The emergency travel order requiring a quarantine for travelers from certain locations was first issued in July in an effort to slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus and has been modified several times since. It’s now updated every other Tuesday, with changes taking effect the following Friday.

The guidelines and restrictions for the emergency order changed in January to the two-tiered system categorizing states as either orange or yellow and eliminating a previous “red” category.

The city said it hopes to simply educate travelers about the order, but those found in violation could be subject to fines of between $100 and $500 per day, up to $7,000.

“The quarantine and pre-arrival testing requirements apply to people even if they have no COVID-19 symptoms,” the city’s health department said in a statement last month announcing the order’s update.

Exceptions can be made for travel for medical care, parental shared custody and business travel for essential workers. It also does not apply to an individual passing through states for less than 24 hours over the course of travel, including layovers at airport or people driving through a particular state. Daily commuters to and from neighboring states are also exempt.





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Chicago to Update Coronavirus Emergency Travel Order Tuesday – NBC Chicago


Chicago is set to update its emergency travel order on Tuesday, detailing where states currently stand under the guidelines for travelers to quarantine or test negative for COVID-19 prior to their arrival in the city.

Last week, Chicago moved both Texas and Nebraska into a higher risk category for travelers, from the lesser “yellow tier” to the “orange tier,” which requires a quarantine or pre-arrival negative test before coming to Chicago, officials said. States move between the two tiers based on average number of cases adjusted per population.

Here’s a look at where each state stands:

  • 25 yellow states and 1 territory: Michigan, Iowa, Idaho, Idaho, Minnesota, Ohio, Mississippi, Montana, West Virginia, Maryland, Maine, New Mexico, Indiana, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nevada, Kansas, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Washington, California, Wyoming, Missouri, Oregon, Puerto Rico, and Hawaii
  • 24 orange states and 1 territory: New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Florida, Delaware, Georgia, Connecticut, Texas, Colorado, North Carolina, Vermont, Kentucky, Alabama, Arizona, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, South Carolina, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Alaska, District of Columbia, Utah, Nebraska, Virginia, and New Hampshire

While health officials urged residents to avoid travel if possible, the requirements for each category are as follows:

  • Yellow: States with a rolling 7-day average less than 15 cases/day/100k residents.
    • No quarantine or pre-arrival test required. Maintain strict masking, social distancing and avoidance of in-person gatherings
  • Orange: States have a rolling 7-day average above 15 cases/day/100k residents
    • 10-day quarantine OR pre-arrival negative test no more than 72 hours before arrival in Chicago with strict masking, social distancing and avoidance of in-person gatherings
      or
    • Be fully vaccinated, as defined as two weeks after the second dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine or two weeks after one dose of a single-dose vaccine and not have symptoms

City health officials recently updated the order to exempt anyone fully vaccinated and without COVID-19 symptoms from the quarantine or test requirement to bring the policy in alignment with new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the Chicago Department of Public Health.

“Fully vaccinated is defined as being at least two weeks after receipt of the second dose in a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series or at least two weeks after receipt of one dose of a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine,” CDPH said in a statement.

“Fully vaccinated travelers must monitor their health for 14 days after travel and if they experience symptoms potentially consistent with COVID-19, they must self-isolate until clinical evaluation and COVID testing,” CDPH continued. “They also must continue to adhere to all recommended protective measures including wearing a mask (and using job-specific personal protective equipment), maintaining physical distance, practicing hand hygiene, and avoiding crowds.”

Health officials still recommend canceling all non-essential travel, vaccinated or not.

“Though the Chicago case numbers have dropped of late, this is not a time to let our guard down,” CDPH previously said. “To maintain the current trajectory, we must double down on what we know prevents COVID spread. This includes wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing, washing your hands and staying at home as much as you can.  Chicago residents are strongly advised to cancel non-essential travel.”

The emergency travel order requiring a quarantine for travelers from certain locations was first issued in July in an effort to slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus and has been modified several times since.

The guidelines and restrictions for the emergency order changed in January to the two-tiered system categorizing states as either orange or yellow and eliminating a previous “red” category.

The city said it hopes to simply educate travelers about the order, but those found in violation could be subject to fines of between $100 and $500 per day, up to $7,000.

“The quarantine and pre-arrival testing requirements apply to people even if they have no COVID-19 symptoms,” the city’s health department said in a statement last month announcing the order’s update.

Exceptions can be made for travel for medical care, parental shared custody and business travel for essential workers. It also does not apply to an individual passing through states for less than 24 hours over the course of travel, including layovers at airport or people driving through a particular state. Daily commuters to and from neighboring states are also exempt.





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Massachusetts COVID Travel Order Changing – NBC Boston


Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker announced Thursday the state will replace the state’s COVID-19 travel order with a travel advisory, one that no longer requires people entering the state to complete a travel form.

The Baker administration said in a news release the change, which includes other steps, will take effect on Monday. That same day, Phase 4 of the state’s coronavirus reopening plan will begin, the administration confirmed Thursday.

Phase 4, Step 1 of the reopening plan allows large-scale venues like indoor and outdoor stadiums, arenas and ballparks to open at 12% capacity and increases gathering limits at event venues and public settings to 100 people inside and 150 people outside. (Private gathering limits remain in place, at 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors.)

Summer camps, exhibitions and convention halls will also be allowed to operate under Phase 4, and weddings and other events may include dance floors.

Phase 4 of the Mass. reopening plan allows for a significant increase in gathering capacities, which means the wedding industry is hoping to bounce back.

Mass. Travel Order Changes

Under the new travel advisory, anyone arriving in the state after being elsewhere for more than 24 hours will be advised to quarantine for 10 days upon their arrival.

Previously, people coming from states without an exemption were required to fill out the form and quarantine for 10 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72 hours prior to arrival.

The advisory does not apply to anyone in the following categories, according to the administration:

  • Anyone who is returning to Massachusetts after an absence of fewer than 24 hours.
  • Travelers who have a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72 hours prior to their arrival in Massachusetts.
  • Workers who enter Massachusetts to perform critical infrastructure functions (as specified by the Federal Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency) while they are commuting to or from or while at work.
  • Travelers who are fully vaccinated (i.e. who have received two doses of either the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines OR who have received a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 14 days or more ago and who do not have symptoms).

Under the outgoing travel order, people can travel to Massachusetts from just four states and one U.S. territory: Oregon, Washington, Missouri, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.





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7 destinations reopening in California now that stay-home order is lifted


Gov. Gavin Newsom’s rollback of statewide COVID-19 rules on Monday startled local officials, park rangers, hoteliers, restaurateurs and others. Within minutes they were scrambling to reopen lodgings, campgrounds and restaurants.

But in some cases — especially in Yosemite National Park — the reopening effort was complicated by fresh damage from winter storms. Some sites, such as the Inn at Death Valley, were expected to reopen by Friday.

For others, including portions of Yosemite National Park, the timetable remains uncertain.

Now that the state has stepped back from the Regional Stay Home order that banned overnight vacations and closed restaurant patios in most of the state, county officials are deciding what businesses can open and how they will be allowed to operate.

Most counties, including Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Mono, since Monday have reverted to previous “purple tier” restrictions that permit leisure travelers to stay overnight at hotels and other lodgings. A spokesman for the California Hotel & Lodging Assn., Pete Hillan, said he was unaware of any counties still forbidding overnight vacations. Here are some places starting to reopen:

State parks campgrounds

California State Parks on Thursday announced “the reopening of campground sites for existing reservation holders” but was unable to say how many of its campgrounds that included. The agency said its campgrounds, most of which have been closed by state orders, would reopen under a phased plan beginning Thursday. It urged prospective campers to check their parks’ web pages, social media accounts and reservecalifornia.com(where reservations typically can be made two or more days in advance) for fresh news.

Death Valley National Park

In Death Valley, the Inn at Death Valley and Ranch at Death Valley, both run by the Xanterra Travel Collection as the Oasis, were expected to open Friday. The resort’s restaurant operations were to reopen that day as well.

Death Valley National Park spokeswoman Abigail Wines said the park was expected to open the following campgrounds, also on Friday: Furnace Creek, Texas Springs, Sunset, Saline Valley, Eureka Dunes and Homestake. That leaves Stovepipe Wells, Emigrant, Wildrose, Thorndike and Mahogany Flat campgrounds closed, with no reopening date set.

Wines said that Stovepipe Wells hotel will reopen soon, but managers must first rehire employees.

Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park officials said they hoped to open western entrances to the park Monday, but major wind storm damage in the Wawona and Mariposa Grove areas, including dozens of felled trees and damaged or destroyed structures, will keep the park’s southern entrance, Wawona Road (Highway 41), closed for much longer.

“We are anticipating several weeks” before visitors can enter from the south, park spokesman Scott Gediman said. As of Wednesday, he said, electricity was still out in the Wawona area.

Also, there are so many downed trees along Glacier Point Road, Gediman said, that “we have not been up that road yet.”

For Monday’s reopening, Gediman said, the entrances admitting traffic will be El Portal Road (Highway 140), Hetch Hetchy Road and Big Oak Flat Road (Highway 120), which enters the park from the west. Visitors will have access to Yosemite Valley.

Besides the closure of Wawona Road, several other areas south of Yosemite Valley will be closed to visitors, including Mariposa Grove, Badger Pass, Wawona and Tunnel View.

In reopening, Yosemite is returning to 24-hour operations. The park had been on restricted hours.

The Yosemite Valley Lodge and the Ahwahnee Hotel are set to reopen Feb. 5.

The park’s Upper Pines Campground will reopen Feb. 8.

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park, which like Yosemite is coping with storm damage and evolving COVID restrictions, started reopening campgrounds Thursday.

Its popular Hidden Valley Campground has reopened on a first-come, first-served basis. The Cottonwood, Cottonwood Group Camp, Indian Cove, Indian Cove Group Camp, Black Rock and Black Rock Equestrian campgrounds are also expected to be open for reservations.

The park’s Belle, Ryan, Jumbo Rocks, Sheep Pass and White Tank campgrounds are to open Monday.

Channel Islands National Park

Island Packers, the Ventura-based concession that runs year-round boat trips to the park’s islands, resumed service on Friday. For now, boats are unable to call at the not-quite-completed pier at Santa Cruz Island’s Scorpion Anchorage.

Channel Islands Adventure Co. said it hopes to resume offering kayak tours at Scorpion Anchorage on Feb. 9.

Island Packers also has resumed offering gray-whale-watching trips from Ventura Harbor and Channel Islands Harbor in Oxnard, with its boats operating at reduced capacity.

A national park spokeswoman said most of its campgrounds (except for Scorpion Anchorage) were expected to reopen Friday

Palm Springs resorts

In Riverside County, the Greater Palm Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau told its members that hotels and other lodging can resume accepting leisure travelers, restaurants can resume outdoor dining, and zoos and museums can restart outdoor operations.

San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo and Safari Park is reopening Saturday for visitors who have advance-purchase tickets.





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Town of Marion Shares State’s Update to COVID-19 Travel Order for Fully Vaccinated Individuals


For immediate release

MARION — Town Administrator James McGrail, Public Health Nurse Lori Desmarais and the Marion Board of Health would like to share with the community the state’s adjustment to the COVID-19 Travel Order for fully vaccinated individuals. 

Earlier this week, Massachusetts adjusted the travel rules for those who have been fully vaccinated. Individuals are considered fully vaccinated if they have received two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine over 14 days ago.

Fully vaccinated individuals are now a designated exception to the state’s travel order. The order states that fully vaccinated individuals who do not have symptoms do not need to have a negative test before traveling to or returning to Massachusetts and do not need to quarantine when they arrive. These individuals will be required to show documentation of their vaccination and the date or dates doses were received, if asked.

Fully vaccinated individuals who have symptoms of COVID-19 must still follow all testing and quarantining requirements of the state’s travel order.

Individuals who are not fully vaccinated must continue to follow the current travel order. Under this order, people entering Massachusetts, including visitors and returning residents, must complete the state’s travel form. They must also either quarantine for 10 days after arriving in Massachusetts or produce a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of their arrival. Residents can also get tested after returning to the state, but must begin their 10-day quarantine until they receive a negative test result. For more information on quarantining requirements or testing, click here.

Those who fail to follow the travel order requirements may be fined up to $500 per day by state officials if they remain in violation.

Exemptions to the travel order are made for those who are traveling from identified lower risk states. As of March 12, the only lower risk states are Hawaii, Missouri, Oregon, Washington and Puerto Rico. Other exemptions are made for transitory travel, people commuting for work or school, patients seeking or receiving medical treatment and military personnel. To see a full explanation of exemptions, click here.

“While continued vaccinations are a promising step toward normalcy, it is important to remember that many orders and regulations remain in place for everyone’s health and safety,” Desmarais said. “Those who have not been fully vaccinated must continue to abide by the state’s travel order, including quarantining and testing requirements, and non-emergency travel to non-lower-risk destinations remains strongly discouraged.”

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Chicago Moves Texas Up on Risk-Based Travel Order


TEXAS – Texas’s statewide mask mandate was rescinded Wednesday and all businesses within the state are now permitted to operate at 100% occupancy.

At the same time, Chicago health officials have deemed travel to the Lone Star State is now more dangerous in regards to COVID-19.

According to several media reports, including one from Chicago television staple WGN, Texas has been moved from the yellow to the orange tier of the city’s emergency travel order, signaling increased risk.

However, the move wasn’t specifically prompted by Texas nearly eliminating state-mandated health measures. The orange tier includes states with a rolling 7-day average above 15 cases per day, per 100,000 residents.

It also means Chicago residents are subject to a 10-day quarantine upon arriving back in the city or a pre-arrival negative test no more than 72 hours prior to arrival. It also mandates strict masking, social distancing, and avoidance of in-person gatherings.

Chicago residents returning from Texas can also be exempt from quarantine if they are fully vaccinated, meaning at least two weeks has elapsed since receiving the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks have elapsed since receiving a one-dose vaccine with an absence of symptoms.

Nebraska was also moved to orange.



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Santa Clara County to Lift 10-Day Travel Quarantine Order – NBC Bay Area


Santa Clara County will lift its 10-day travel quarantine order on Wednesday, the county announced.

The order, which was put in place in late November, required people coming into the county from more than 150 miles away to quarantine for 10 days.

While quarantining will no longer be required, it’s still strongly recommended.

“With new variants still spreading, everyone is still urged to follow the state’s travel advisory, to avoid all non-essential travel and to quarantine after any travel that you may partake in,” County Counsel James Williams said.





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What States Don’t Need Quarantine Under COVID Travel Order? – NBC Boston


And then there were none.

North Dakota had been the only state within the continental United States deemed low-risk enough that travelers from there could arrive in Massachusetts without quarantining under its COVID travel order.

But North Dakota was removed from the list Friday, leaving just one state and a U.S. territory on the low-risk list. Here’s what to know about the adjustment to the order:

  • The change to the order went into effect Saturday after midnight, meaning that, starting Saturday, people arriving into Massachusetts from North Dakota have to follow quarantine rules, along with travelers from 48 other states.
  • Travelers from places that aren’t on the low-risk list must fill out the Massachusetts Travel Form and quarantine for 14 days, according to the state’s guidelines.
  • Hawaii is the lone U.S. state still deemed low-risk. Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory, is also classified as low-risk under the latest guidelines.
  • To be included on Massachusetts’ list of low-risk states for travel, the location must have fewer than 10 average daily cases per 100,000 people and a positive COVID-19 test rate below 5%. Both figures must hold over at least a seven-day average.

See more the full details on the Massachusetts travel order here.





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San Francisco Lifts 10-Day Travel Quarantine Order – NBC Bay Area


San Franciscans who travel outside the Bay Area for non-essential reasons are no longer required to quarantine for 10 days when they return, the city announced Tuesday.

The travel quarantine order was put in place in mid-December to help curb a spike in coronavirus cases.

Improving case numbers allowed the city to lift the order.

While the order has been lifted, the city is still urging residents to avoid non-essential trips outside the region. If people travel out of state or more than 120 miles away from home, they are encouraged to quarantine for 10 days.

“Lifting this order does not mean that it’s now safe to just hop on a plane or go on a road trip,” San Francisco’s acting Health Officer Dr. Susan Philip said in a statement. “This is not a travel free-for-all. We’ve made tremendous progress and brought our case numbers down, but we need to keep our guards up. The growing prevalence of variants, some of which were brought from abroad, is further proof that we must be extra cautious. If we do everything we are supposed to—wear our masks, practice physical distancing, avoid indoor gatherings with other households—we can continue to reopen businesses, schools and community activities. Voluntarily quarantining after traveling out of state or 120 miles from home helps protect everyone. Let’s go forward, not backward.”





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