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Florida governor orders border checkpoints, quarantines for visitors

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered checkpoints set up along the state's borders to stop drivers coming from what he calls coronavirus hot spots.
Courtesy Florida DOT/Facebook

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTHR) - Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has directed the Florida Department of Transportation to set up checkpoints along the state's borders to stop drivers coming from what he calls coronavirus hot spots.

One of them is set up on Interstate 10 just across the border from Mobile, Alabama. Another is on I-95 north of Jacksonville.

All drivers, except semi-trucks, have to pull into a weigh station, where state workers from the Florida Department of Health, Florida Department of Transportation and Florida Highway Patrol will ask for details of your trip.

The state posted about the new restrictions on its Facebook page Saturday night.

Citing Executive Order 20-86 DeSantis, "motorists entering Florida from areas with significant community spread" will be stopped. Areas mention specificially are "Louisiana, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut." Those travelers "will be required to isolate for a period of 14 days upon entry to Florida or for the duration of their visit, whichever is shorter, and should be prepared for additional monitoring by DOH to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19."

Military, emergency, health or infrastructure response, or persons involved in any commercial activity, including individuals that live in Georgia and commute to work in Florida are not part of the order.

Others will be required to fill out a traveler form at the border, asking for each traveler’s contact information and trip details. "Failure to complete the form and failure to follow any isolation or quarantine order from DOH are a violation of Florida law," according to the post.

Florida Highway Patrol will staff the checkpoint at I-10 at the Alabama/Florida line with approximately 16 troopers working 12-hour shifts.

Truckers making deliveries to keep supply chains moving will be allowed to pass.

DeSantis is also suspending any new vacation rentals in the state for two weeks.