Abbott expands coronavirus quarantine hotspots as Texas adds hospital beds for COVID-19

Talk 1370 Newsroom
March 29, 2020 - 9:19 am
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott

Office of the Governor

AUSTIN ( -- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is putting more restrictions on travel into the state of Texas from areas around the country deemed to be hotspots for COVID-19.

Abbott revealed new executive orders during a Sunday afternoon update on the state's efforts to combat the virus.

One new order expands restrictions on travel from Louisiana. Travelers entering the state by air from New Orleans were already being required to self-quarantine for 14 days; a new executive order issued Sunday adds travel by road from the entire state of Louisiana. Travel for commercial, medical, military, or critical infrastructure purposes will not be impacted.

Abbott also expanded a previous executive order requiring air travelers entering the state to self-quarantine, adding the cities of Miami, Atlanta, Detroit, and Chicago, as well as Washington State and California to the list of restricted air travel, joining New York and its greater tri-state area and Louisiana.

In the second new executive order issued Sunday, Abbott prohibited the release of individuals in custody for or with a history of offenses involving physical violence or the threat of physical violence.

Abbott also spoke about the state's efforts to bolster hospital capacity, in cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Texas Military Department. The state's first pop-up hospital is being set up at Dallas' Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, with efforts underway to establish more across the state.

"While hospitals will remain the primary location to treat and care for those in need, we are ensuring that Texas is prepared for any possible scenario in which current hospital capacity is exhausted," said Governor Abbott. "This joint initiative with the Texas Military Department and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will expand the care capacity in communities across Texas."

As of Saturday, more than 2,500 positive cases had been confirmed across the state, with 34 deaths.

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