“Don’t come here.” Desantis: Checkpoints at state lines to keep travelers from covid-19 “epicenters” out of the panhandle

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WKRG/ASSOCIATED PRESS) –Governor Ron DeSantis said during his daily briefing Friday that checkpoints will be set up at state lines in Florida, limiting travel from covid-19 hot spots like Louisiana. Commercial vehicles would be allowed to move freely. DeSantis said that vacation rentals will also be suspended for two weeks, “if you’re coming from one of the epicenters, we probably think you should obey the directions of your state and local officials. And if they are telling you to shelter in place do that but don’t come here.” DeSantis says panhandle communities have relatively low numbers of cases and they want to keep it that way.

The Governor said this is an effort to prevent people from traveling to Florida to escape other “hot spots” of the coronavirus. Details on the checkpoints weren’t extremely clear, but DeSantis said people with certain license plates would be diverted and “if they blow through the checkpoints they could be pulled over”

MORE FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered Friday that anyone arriving in the state from Louisiana must self-quarantine like those arriving from New York already must because of the coronavirus pandemic.

DeSantis said he is expanding his quarantine order to include Louisiana after officials in the lightly hit Panhandle worried that people will flee New Orleans as the number of positive tests there climb. DeSantis said the Florida Highway Patrol and sheriff’s offices will set up checkpoints to screen cars arriving from Louisiana.

The order will require anyone who arrives from Louisiana to isolate themselves for two weeks under the threat of a misdemeanor conviction and a 60-day jail sentence. He already issued this week identical restrictions on travelers arriving from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

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