Honolulu Mayor says US Travel Association is wrong and extends lockdown
Let’s go there soon, is a new slogan to the traveling public announced today by the US Travel Association. Hawaii says not so fast, and Mayor Kirk Caldwell of Honolulu today extended the second 2-week lockdown supposed to end tomorrow night for another two weeks.
Honolulu Mayor Caldwell in cooperation with Hawaii Governor Ige extended the “Stay at Home” order until September 24 with one exception. Residents and visitors are now allowed to go to the parks and beaches, but they have to go alone. One person at a time, and it also counts for families. Single visitors can now enjoy food in parks again.
It was a great setback 12 days ago when Hawaii put in its second “Stay at Home” order in response to a sudden record outbreak of the virus spreading on the island. Before, shops, restaurants, and malls were opened. Hotels planned to open and visitor numbers increased despite the mandatory 2-week quarantine order in place.
Many blamed the military for allowing its members and their families to arrive in the Aloha State in large numbers and not being required to quarantine. This was changed on August 11, but it may have been too late.
From more than 300 new infections a day just 10 days ago, the number was 66 today with 2 dead. Staying home and massive testing had pushed Hawaii from a problem state to being back on a possible fast track to again become the leader in the United States in preventing the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.
The Stay at Home order seems to be working, but the Aloha State’s number one industry is taking a terrible hit. Waikiki Beach is patrolled by police looking for beach goers breaking rules, and special agents are roaming the hallways of hotels looking for visitors violating quarantine.
All restaurants and bars are closed now again except for take-out orders. Shops are closed except for supermarkets and Walmarts and Costco stores. Most hotels and resorts remain closed. One entire hotel is being rented by the state to house those who are sick with the coronavirus. Waikiki is no longer a fun place to visit.
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“There will be a lot more [that will be] relied on science when it comes to reopening our economy after September 24,” the Honolulu Mayor said today. “This will be worked out in the next days.”
Mayor Caldwell told eTurboNews he disagrees with US Travel and WTTC on speaking out against all quarantine requirements by states or countries. It means their demand for open borders is not what Hawaii has in mind for itself. The Honolulu Mayor explained with so many dead and increasing infections due to travel, this demand is not anything he agrees with. He acknowledges that the travel industry wants to function and relaunch, and the mandate by such organizations like US Travel representing this industry is understandable.
The Mayor added he supports testing. Testing prior to and after arrival to shorten or eliminate the quarantine requirements is the key for the visitor industry to rebuild.
Listen to Mayor Kirk Caldwell:
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