Amid Wednesday’s nationwide uproar, a recently released California travel advisory drew little attention.
Presented by the California Department of Public Health, the guidelines aim to further restrict the movement of residents. Additionally, it includes the idea that “non-essential travelers from other states or countries are strongly discouraged from entering California.
“In the midst of the current COVID-19 surge,” the text read, “it is imperative that California take the necessary measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 and contain new sources of infection”,
The notice is called a “recommendation” and replaces the earlier, less strict order made in November.
It has three main points:
1. Except for essential travel, Californians should avoid traveling to any part of the state more than 120 miles from their place of residence.
Update on Covid-19 in the United States: The virus killed nearly 4,000 Americans on Wednesday as Fauci warns,
2. Non-essential travelers from other states or countries are strongly discouraged from entering California.
3. All persons returning to California from other states or countries must self-quarantine for 10 days after arrival, except those taking essential trips.
The health official’s order comes in addition to the state’s stay-at-home order issued in late November, which implemented a state-wide curfew and requires masks in all activities where people will or may be in contact with members who do not belong to the household.
California’s new direction came as the state reported a near-record daily death toll, at 583. That is just two deaths below the all-time high of 585 the state suffered on Dec. 31. It was then that the country as a whole recorded its worst pandemic count ever, at 3,856.
More broadly, on Thursday, California recorded 35,385 new cases and experienced its highest level of hospitalizations since the start of the epidemic last January.
The new measures likely have something to do with the expected deluge of infections from travel and gatherings over the holiday season. In remarks to NPR on Thursday, Dr Anthony Fauci warned of a new wave.
“We saw [surges] keep up with most of the events that require travel and … have people, you know, come together naturally in a social setting. So we think things will get worse as January approaches, ”Fauci said.