FORT LAUDERDALE — People traveling from Florida to New York may soon be required to quarantine upon their arrival in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday.
Cuomo called the move, which he is still mulling, a "full 180," after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis required people traveling from New York to Florida to quarantine in late March, Sun Sentinel sister paper The New York Daily News reported Thursday.
"If you went to Florida, you had to quarantine for two weeks because they were afraid that New Yorkers were bringing the virus to their state," Cuomo said Thursday, according to the Daily News. "You want to talk about a full 180. Fast forward a 100 days, now we're afraid they're bringing the virus to our state."
Florida likely won't be the only state affected by the move, if Cuomo decides to enact it. New York may require people traveling from any states seeing upticks to quarantine, the Daily News reported. He also has not made a determination as of Thursday night.
"I haven't made a decision yet, but I have had experts advise me of that. It is a real concern," Cuomo said. "It could happen, and it's something I'm considering."
As spring turns to summer, snowbirds who came to Florida for the winter and delayed their return home would likely be affected by the decision, if finalized.
And while it's difficult to track the exact number of New York residents that migrate south for the winter, Florida generally gains more than 800,000 residents each winter, mostly from New York, and that number grows each year, according to the Gerontological Society of America. In 2011, about 500,000 of them visited Broward County alone, spending about $1 billion. In Palm Beach County, it was about 150,000 snowbirds.
Last month, DeSantis said his order, which he passed in late March as cases in New York saw a huge rise, helped prevent deaths. That order is still in effect.
South Florida has significant ties to New York, with many New Yorkers retiring in South Florida and Floridians traveling to New York to visit family.
Cases in Florida have been rising at alarming rates, epidemiologists and public health officials have said over the past week.
Florida added an all-time record 3,207 cases in one day on Thursday, according to data from the Florida Department of Health. The previous record was 2,783 cases on Tuesday.