Hawaii says it only got 'two minutes' notice of the Trump administration's plan to quarantine US citizens in Honolulu
A Hawaiian official says the state got "two minutes" notice before the Trump administration on Friday announced measures to reroute potential coronavirus sufferers to them. The Department of Homeland Security plan is meant to contain the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus by rerouting US citizens returning from Wuhan to designated areas, like Honolulu. Hawaii Lt. Gov. Josh Green told The Washington Post that local officials were left to quickly figure out how to safely implement the new restrictions. Green told The Post on Monday that Hawaii officials were still waiting for notice from the Defense Department on where to put quarantined travelers. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Officials in Hawaii say they got a heads-up of just "two minutes" when the Trump administration on Friday announced that the US is temporarily barring foreign nationals who have been in China within the past 14 days. Many of these quarantined citizens will be sent to Honolulu, according to a plan by the Department of Homeland Security. The measure is meant to curb the spread of the coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China. It has so far killed at least 426 people and infected more than 20,000 across 24 countries. The new regulations say that US citizens and permanent residents who have recently traveled to China's Hubei province (where Wuhan is the capital) will be quarantined for up to two weeks. Those who have traveled to other provinces in mainland China will be screened and monitored upon arrival in the US. The announcement said that Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu will be one of several US airports to receive flights from China. Hong Kong and Macau are excluded from the travel ban. The rules took effect at 5 p.m. ET on Sunday. A spokesperson for Hawaii Governor David Ige told Business Insider that state officials were told about the new flight rules "about two minutes ahead" of the DHS press conference on Friday. "Other than that, nothing," the spokesperson said. Hawaii Lt. Gov. Josh Green told The Washington Post that said that the rollout of the new measures was "concerning." "When you rush, you make mistakes, and this isn't a case where we can afford mistakes," he told The Post. He said local officials were left to quickly figure out how to safely implement the new restrictions. "The kind of questions people were asking were just basic things, like what is your protocol for routing planes into our airports? What is [Center for Disease Control]'s standard for quarantine? Where are we supposed to put these people?" he said. Green told The Post on Monday that Hawaii officials were still waiting for notice from the Defense Department on where to house the quarantined travelers. "We are an island state that is 80% dependent on tourism. This isn't a case where we can just put people up in hotels without great collateral risk," he said. DHS Acting Secretary Chad F. Wolf said in Friday's press release that the administration was implementing the quarantine to protect Americans. "While the overall risk to the American public remains low, funneling all flights with passengers who have recently been in China is the most important and prudent step we can take at this time to decrease the strain on public health officials screening incoming travelers," Wolf said the statement. According to the Post, it is still unclear how many new people have been placed under quarantine or have been denied entry into the US. SEE ALSO: The Wuhan coronavirus has killed 426 people and infected more than 19,000. Here's everything we know about the outbreak. Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Behind the scenes with Shepard Smith — the Fox News star who just announced his resignation from the network
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Passengers and crew members quarantined off Japan were told by the American Embassy that a chartered...Passengers and crew members quarantined off Japan were told by the American Embassy that a chartered flight would arrive on Sunday to take them back to the United States.
Americans on the coronavirus-struck Diamond Princess cruise ship will be flown back to US to face another two-week quarantine
The US State Department will fly Americans who have been quarantined on the Diamond Princess cruise...The US State Department will fly Americans who have been quarantined on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan back to the US, the Wall Street Journal reported. The Americans, who have already faced a two-week quarantine for the coronavirus, will face another 14-day quarantine at Air Forces bases in California when they return. The flights are expected to arrive in the US as early as Sunday, according to the report. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. The United States State Department has sponsored two planes to bring back Americans who have been stuck aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan following a 14-day quarantine for the coronavirus, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. The luxury cruise ship had been slated to dock on February 4 but plans changed when 10 passengers tested positive for the virus. At least 285 cases of the coronavirus, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan in the Hubei province, have since been diagnosed on the ship. The ship's outbreak is among the largest cases outside of China. The Japanese government even provided iPhones to each cabin on the Diamond Princess — docked in the city of Yokohama — so quarantined passengers could use an app to request medication and talk to doctors. The American extraction effort is expected to occur as early as Sunday, the report said. Nearly 67,000 people have been infected globally, but nearly all of those cases have been in China. In total, the ship is carrying around 3,500 passengers, including about 380 Americans and their families, the WSJ reported. On Thursday, the Japanese Health Ministry announced it would allow some elderly passengers without signs of the virus off of the ship before the rest of the passengers. The American passengers will likely travel to Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California, just outside of Sacramento, Henry Walke, the director of the CDC's Division of Preparedness and Emerging Infections, told the WSJ. Some passengers will then face a two-week quarantine at the base, Wilke told the WSJ, though according to an email received by passengers, there are conflicting reports that passengers could face the 14-day quarantine at the Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, California, where about 230 Americans who recently traveled to Wuhan, China are already being quarantined. The incoming US citizens from the Diamond Princess will be housed separately from the previous group of quarantined, Walke told the WSJ. There are about 600 total people on Military bases throughout the US under quarantine over fears of the virus. US citizens aboard the ship who had previously tested positive for the virus, but have since tested negative following treatment at hospitals, may also be allowed to return on the State Department-sponsored flights. If Americans currently test positive for the virus, or exhibit symptoms like a fever or cough, they will not be allowed on the flight and will remain in Japan for medical treatment. Busses will reportedly take the passengers from the ship to the airport Sunday evening local time, according to the report. It is believed the virus first appeared on the ship when a passenger exited the ship and Hong Kong, though as the WSJ noted, it's unclear how the virus spread to so many people on board the vessel. The State Department did not return a Business Insider request for comment. Read more: The US military has set up 15 coronavirus quarantine camps on its bases, and 600 citizens are still isolated there China's unprecedented quarantine of 11 million people in Wuhan is 3 weeks old. Here's what it's like in the isolated city. We may be 1.5 years away from a coronavirus vaccine, the World Health Organization said. Here's why it might take so long to develop. Europe just had its 1st death from the coronavirus after a Chinese tourist died in FranceJoin the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: 9 items to avoid buying at Costco
Two flights departed China with about 300 passengers aboard, Pentagon says. One lands near San Diego;...Two flights departed China with about 300 passengers aboard, Pentagon says. One lands near San Diego; passengers will be quarantined at base there.