Coronavirus: Trump encourages Americans not to travel domestically unless they have to

‘We’re working with the states and we are considering other restrictions’

Clark Mindock
New York
Saturday 14 March 2020 17:55
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Trump bumps elbows with health care executive at coronavirus press conference

Donald Trump is encouraging Americans not to travel domestically, as the coronavirus continues to spread throughout the United States.

"Well if you don’t have to travel I wouldn’t do it. If you don’t have to travel," Mr Trump said, when asked about a Pentagon directive to military families urging them not to travel domestically if possible. "We want this thing to end. We don’t want a lot of people being infected. We want it to end and end as quickly as possible."

Mr Trump was later asked if there are any plans to limit domestic travel, to which he responded: "Yes. Yes."

"Specifically from certain areas, yes we are," he said. "And we’re working with the states and we are considering other restrictions."

It is unclear which areas of the United States might see travel restrictions, however the country has seen a concentration of cases in large coastal states like New York and Washington State, which has been seen as the epicentre of the epidemic and has the highest number of fatalities to date.

Mr Trump and his coronavirus task force have also decided to extend a travel ban that was already in place that prohibits entrance into the US for foreign nationals travelling from Europe. The extended version now includes the United Kingdom and Ireland, which were initially exempt when the president announced the policy on Wednesday evening.

So far, there have been at least 2,177 confirmed cases in the United States, with 51 deaths, including one in New York that was announced just hours before Mr Trump's Saturday press conference.

The president announced that he has taken a test to see if he has the coronavirus, after coming into contact last weekend with several people who have now tested positive.

He said it may be days until results return.

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