New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday that the New York City Sheriff's Office will be overseeing coronavirus checkpoints to remind visitors to quarantine if they're coming from states hit hardest by the virus.
"Starting today, we're going to do something new in New York City," De Blasio said at a press briefing. "We will have checkpoints at key entry points to the city. Travelers coming in from those states will be given information about the quarantine. They will be reminded it is required, not optional. They will be reminded that failure to quarantine is a violation of state law, and it comes with serious penalties. ... Fines can be as high as $10,000."
De Blasio praised New York state's mandatory 14-day quarantine that applies to travelers from states with high infection rates.
"We need to make sure that quarantine becomes stronger every day," De Blasio said.
The mayor's announcement comes just a day after the city's Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot resigned and criticized the city for keeping health experts in the "background" of coronavirus response.
As of Wednesday, New York City had more than 230,000 positive cases of COVID-19 and more than 23,000 deaths, according to a New York Times analysis that includes probable coronavirus deaths.
Visitors to New York City from the following states will have to fill out a New York Department of Health traveler form and quarantine themselves:
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- New Mexico
- Puerto Rico
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina