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Mandatory quarantine imposed on NYC-bound travellers

International travellers visiting New York City must quarantine, with travellers from the U.K. getting handed a quarantine order directly by NYC Sheriff deputies at their home or hotel, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday as a mutant coronavirus in Britain raises alarm locally and abroad.

De Blasio said that beginning Wednesday, all international travellers will receive a Department of Health commissioner’s order by mail directing them to quarantine after they fill out forms with contact information at airports.

Travellers from the U.K.—where a new, apparently highly contagious strain of the coronavirus is spreading—will also receive the order, but it will be delivered directly by deputies at their home or hotel.

“Every traveller who comes into this city, that we identify as someone coming into this city or coming back to this city, will also receive that Department of Health commissioner’s order,” the mayor said. “It’s going to be confirmed they got it and then people are going to be held responsible to make sure they’re following the quarantine.”

What to know:
• All passengers will receive a DOH commissioner’s order to quarantine via certified mail
• UK travellers will be personally served DOH commissioner’s order to quarantine by the Sheriff’s Office
• Travel unit will door knock to ensure compliance

While all international travellers will receive the order, there will be an additional measure for people arriving from the U.K. They will get a visit from deputies, who will hand them the order that directs them to follow the mandatory quarantine. Travel units will be doing follow-up visits to ensure compliance by U.K. travellers.

“We’re going to have sheriff deputies go to the home or the hotel of every single traveler coming in from the U.K.,” de Blasio said. “There’s going to be a follow-up, direct home or hotel visit from the sheriff’s deputy to confirm that they are following the quarantine, or if they are not, they will be penalised.”

Sheriff Joseph Fucito said travel units from the Mayor’s Office would check in on people and then relay violations to the sheriff, who would serve notices of violation. Deputies will also let travellers know the city services that are available to them during their visit.

De Blasio said violators face a $1,000 initial fine if they don’t quarantine and a $1,000 fine every day thereafter if they’re still not quarantining.