As of Tuesday, July 28 Connecticut’s travel advisory list was expanded to include Illinois, Kentucky, Minnesota, Puerto Rico, and Washington DC.
Anyone traveling from a state with a new daily positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents, or with 10%+ positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average is directed to quarantine for a 14 days.
At his Monday press conference Lamont said over the three preceding days there were 207 positive cases out of about 32,000 tests, which is about .6%.
“We’ve now had a 1% positivity rate over the past month,” Lamont said. “We’re not an island, but we’ve worked very hard to limit the number of folks coming into our state from those very highly infected states.”
Lamont noted it was helpful none of the states on the list were neighbors of Connecticut.
Anyone entering from one of the identified states must now fill out a travel health form upon arrival.
The form is available online at ct.gov/travelform, which means that travelers arriving by car can fill out a form.
“Maybe they catch a flight in LaGuardia Airport and drive up from there,” he said. “So the online form allows us to track and see who is coming into the state and where they’ll be staying.”
As of Thursday, 5,000 forms had been received, with the biggest chunk, 25%, filled out by people leaving Florida to come to Connecticut.
“Some time ago we thought about a lot of people leaving Connecticut for Florida,” he recalled.
Governor Lamont implemented the travel advisory in collaboration with the governors of New York and New Jersey to keep slow the spread of Covid-19 while cases were spiking elsewhere.
Since late June the list has grown from 8 states to 34 states, and, taken together they account for over 80% of the US population.
The Governor said there had been a number of large parties attended by young people.
“Those parties have carried with them a fair number of infections,” Lamont said. “A couple of them down in Fairfield County involved young people coming from out-of-state to party.”
He said at one party attendees were vaping.
Smokers as a group are at higher risk for severe illness if they contract the disease. Vapers are also more likely to cough and exhale more forcefully, making them more likely to spread their droplets to surfaces. Plus, when you’re vaping you cannot wear a mask, which can prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Lamont said he’d spoken to students and superintendents, and planned to reach out to parents about the rising number of cases of teens and people in their 20’s getting the virus.
“We’ve got to really strict about this. I looked down in Florida and Arizona and the governors say if often started with young people,” he said.
“It’s incredibly risky behavior not only for yourself, but for the broader community. Fellow parents are getting this message loud and clear that this is not acceptable behavior,” he said.
“I’ll tell you, the folks who find out who is hosting these parties – people were not happy with them – so there is a fair amount of accountability informally,” he continued, adding that his team is producing PSAs, and would even consider sanctions.
“If there is a big party that doesn’t meet basic guidelines and not an attempt at social distancing, and passing around a JUUL vaping product to share, that is dangerous behavior,” Lamont said.