Checkpoints on the streets and fines: Florida tightens quarantine measures

When Saturday, March 28, in Florida the number of deaths from the coronavirus has reached 54, and the total number of infected exceeded 4000, Governor Ron DeSantis ordered the surgeon General of the state, Dr. Scott Rivkees, send notification to each resident of the state, writes USA Today.

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The message that Rebecca was 28 March, the day was a repetition of recommendations that were released a few days before — that people aged 65 years and older, and persons with underlying diseases should stay home and avoid the crowds, and everyone should practice “social distancing”.

By the evening of March 28 the number of cases of coronavirus in Florida totaled 4038, which is more than 5 times more than the week before, when the state reported 706 cases of infection. The number of deaths reached 56.

The virus was especially deadly for people over 65 years old: this group is 89% of all deaths in the state. Another 35% were aged 55 to 74 years. The people of the younger age accounted for 4% of deaths of people aged 85 years and older — 19% of deaths.

“Protect yourself. Now is not the time to go out. Don’t get involved in any large crowd, use this time to protect themselves,” said DeSantis live from your meeting room in the Capitol.

DeSantis and public health authorities struggling to control the spread of the virus before it overwhelms the capacity of hospitals and medical personnel to assist.

Friday, March 27, the Governor issued an order that extends the previous Directive, according to which the passengers of the new York area should isolate themselves within 14 days. Now to the order of quarantine he added those who came from Louisiana via interstate 10 Interstate.

The prohibition does not apply to commercial transportation.

In New Orleans there has been a surge of coronavirus and recorded more than 1000 cases after the traditional festival, Mardi Gras. The total number of cases in Louisiana has exceeded 3300 as of Saturday, March 28. DeSantis wants to prevent any possibility of visitors from Louisiana to “import” the virus in Florida.

Pensacola, Florida is only a 3-hour drive from New Orleans, and officials expressed concern about the fact that travelers are leaving the state and bringing the virus to Florida.

“Look, we either try to fight this virus or not,” said DeSantis about his plan, which includes control at the checkpoint on Interstate 10 on the line of Alabama and staff of the National guard meet travelers from new York area airports.

“We did what we could, with new York, and we do the same with a hot spot of New Orleans,” said DeSantis.

His Executive decrees have identified a large part of new York and Louisiana as areas with a significant scatter of the population. Individuals travelling from these regions, have “independently” to say that they arrived from the hot spot, and to agree to be quarantined for 14 days after arrival in Florida. A breach can face a 60-day imprisonment and a fine of up to $ 500.

Along the I-10 freeway were equipped with special signs that guide drivers to the checkpoint, where they are notified of the requirement. DeSantis said he also is considering creating a special item at the I-95 motorway, in order to “catch” tourists from new York.

Despite the fact that the Department of health of the state of Georgia called Albany (town 88 miles North of Tallahassee, Florida), the place of the “steady spread of the coronavirus”, DeSantis said nothing about creating a checkpoint on highway I-75. His office did not respond to a request for the control of highway 319. Both routes connect North Florida Albany.

The Governor also urged local authorities, airport and airlines to help identify travelers from the hot spots. Officials of the National guard and of health are already working at major airports, and DeSantis urged to check the arrival of these travelers to smaller airports such as Tallahassee.

Friday, March 27, he said that the state will suspend the rental of vacation homes for two weeks, telling visitors: “If you are now resting in a place, finish and go home.”

Despite growing support among legislators, DeSantis refused to issue an order of isolation throughout the state, restricting the movement of residents, as did 22 other state. Instead, he chose to allow local authorities to address this issue. At least in 10 districts imposed any restrictions, closing nonessential businesses and advising residents to stay at home.

In South Florida there are strict limitations to the orders on the ground in the districts of Broward and Miami-Dade County, which accounts for nearly half of HIV infections in the state.

The County Hillsborough and Pinellas also issued directives as orange County and Osceola in Central Florida. In some communities, including in the County of Leon, also imposed a curfew in many places, for violation of the regime it is possible to arrest or a fine.

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