HEALTH

Governor announces travel restrictions into Utah

Apr 8, 2020, 2:46 PM | Updated: 6:03 pm
Utah travel restrictions...

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Gov. Gary Herbert announced an order that affects adults who are entering the state of Utah via roadways and airways.

At the daily news briefing from Utah officials on the COVID-19 pandemic and Utah’s measures to combat the virus, Gov. Herbert said the state has issued an order requiring every individual over age 18, who enters Utah as their final destination, to complete a travel declaration form before they exit the airport.

Herbert said they hope to have this order in place by Friday, April 10th, ahead of the Easter weekend.

Carlos Braceras, director of the Utah Department of Transportation, stated the department has “geo-fenced” nine ports of entry around the state.  They include…

  • I-15 at the Idaho and Arizona borders
  • I-80 at Nevada and Wyoming borders
  • I-84 from Idaho
  • I-70 from Colorado
  • U.S. Highway 491 near Monticello
  • U.S. Highway 89 by Kanab

A text message will be sent to travelers when they cross a selected point of entry.

Governor Herbert says the travel declaration will ask travelers if they have been tested by COVID-19, particularly in the last 14 days, and what the test results were.

The declaration will also ask if the traveler is currently experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, including cough, shortness of breath, or fever.

The traveler will be asked to detail where they have traveled before they came to Utah, to help stop and slow down the spread of COVID-19 coronavirus.

In some instances, the state will ask the traveler to be tested and/or self-quarantine.

At this time, the travel declaration is not applicable to the St. George airport and the state does not plan to track down people who refuse to complete the form.

CHANGES AT THE AIRPORT

While drivers coming into the state will get a text message alerting them to complete their declaration, things will look different inside Salt Lake International Airport.  There, workers will deliver cards to people that have QR codes, leading them to the online form.

Mayor Erin Mendenhall says there have been many questions about how this pandemic will harm the airline industry.  However, she believes this isn’t like the attacks on 9/11, where safety officials could quickly add new security measures to keep people safe.

“We won’t see that kind of quick response as people who may be carrying the virus may not even know it, yet,” Mendenhall says.

She also says UDOT will be bringing in new no-touch sensors that can monitor the temperatures of everyone arriving into the airport.  This will give them a better idea of who may be infected.

“They have not arrived, yet.  So, we’re not yet able to do that,” she says.

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