Passengers Arrive In Connecticut From COVID Hot Spots Amid Travel Advisory | Connecticut Public Radio
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Passengers Arrive In Connecticut From COVID Hot Spots Amid Travel Advisory

Jun 25, 2020

The state’s travel advisory to visitors from coronavirus hot spots took effect Thursday.

Gov. Ned Lamont and his counterparts from New Jersey and New York say that a visit from areas with high infection rates requires a 14-day self-quarantine.

But the way Lamont was talking as he spoke Thursday from Bradley International Airport, self-quarantine is more of a recommendation than a requirement.

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“We’re not there yet,” Lamont said regarding enforcement of the advisory.

“Right now, I’m just proud that we got all of the electronic signage up. We reached out to all of the key associations -- they know they have to keep people informed about what it means to go to Connecticut, especially if you’re from one of those risky states.”

Meanwhile, the Connecticut Airport Authority also won’t push a quarantine on passengers. Kevin Dillon, executive director of the CAA, said it’s up to travelers to police themselves.

He said he’s asked Lamont for on-site COVID-19 testing at Bradley so that healthy travelers may bypass a quarantine.

Immediately after Lamont finished talking to reporters, passengers from South Carolina flooded the baggage claim area. That’s one of the high-risk states on the travel advisory list.

Lois Labrecque and her husband, Bruce, were on the 1 p.m. Spirit Airlines flight from Myrtle Beach. Standing at baggage claim, Labrecque said the ride wasn’t different from the trip down -- before the advisory went out.

“As far as getting on the plane and stuff, it was the exact same,” Lois Labrecque said. “You’d have your mask -- all of that was the same.”

Labrecque’s husband wasn’t happy with the airline, though. He felt it broke a promise -- that if he bought two tickets in a row of three, the third seat would be unoccupied.

“Guy sat down right next to us,” Bruce Labrecque said. “His girlfriend sat across the aisle from him. We were not socially distanced at all on the plane, which I thought was sad.”

Signs at Bradley International Airport remind travelers to wear masks at all times and maintain proper social distancing on June 25.
Credit Tyler Russell / Connecticut Public

Spirit Airlines has yet to comment on its social distancing efforts. A Spirit news release from May said that middle seats would remain open only when possible.  

Cortney Dunlap was the on same flight as the Labrecques and said there was no social distancing on the plane.  

Fresh off his South Carolina vacation, Dunlap recounted what he saw in terms of how that state is practicing coronavirus mitigation compared to Connecticut.

“It’s a lot different down there,” Dunlap said. “They’re much more liberal than we are up here -- you can eat in restaurants down there, you don’t have to wear a mask anywhere.”

On the day that Dunlap and the Labrecques flew back to Bradley, South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control announced 1,106 new cases of COVID-19.