Severity: Warning Alert

Transportation: Authorities in New Mexico, US, ease certain coronavirus disease-related travel restrictions Sept. 4. Other restrictions remain in place.

Alert Begins 04 Sep 2020 07:14 PM UTC
Alert Expires 02 Oct 2020 11:59 PM UTC

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): New Mexico (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Travel and business disruptions

Summary
Authorities in New Mexico have eased certain travel and other restrictions that had been implimented as part of the state's response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. As of Sept. 4, travelers entering from states having a low risk of COVID-19 transmission are exempt from New Mexico's quarantine requirement. States classified as "low-risk" are those having COVID-19 test positivity rates of less than 5 percent, or infection rates of fewer than 80 new cases per 1 million inhabitants over a seven-day rolling average. The states classified as low-risk as of Sept. 4 are: Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Wyoming and Washington. Travelers from any other US state or from foreign countries must self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. Persons providing proof of having tested negative for COVID-19 no more than 72 hours before arrival are exempt from this requirement. Travelers can also be released from the quarantine directive by testing negative for COVID-19 after arrival in New Mexico. The order does not apply to New Mexico residents who visit another state for medical attention or individuals who leave the state for less than 24 hours for parenting responsibilities. Airline employees, federal employees, first responders, public safety workers, health care workers, military personnel, and essential workers who need to conduct business in New Mexico are also exempt.

The new health directive also stipulates that "safe-certified" hotels may increase occupancy from 50 to 75 percent. Howver, other business restrictions remain in effect. Restaurants may open for indoor dining at 25 percent capacity. Places of worship are permitted to open with up to 40 percent of their maximum capacity. Museums with static displays may open at 25 percent capacity. Public gatherings of up to 10 people are permitted. Essential businesses, including grocery stores, pharmacies, banks, and those in the security, critical manufacturing, transport, and healthcare sectors, have not been subject to closures; however, social distancing and health mandates still apply to such establishments. Recreational facilities and entertainment venues, such as movie theaters and amusement parks, remain closed. Only New Mexico residents are allowed to visit state parks and authorities are requiring park visitors to show proper identification prior to entry. Residents and visitors in New Mexico are still required to wear protective face coverings whenever in public; authorities are also encouraging residents to stay home unless completing essential tasks.

Authorities could reimpose, extend, further ease, or otherwise amend any restrictions with little-to-no notice depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.

Advice
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.


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