Mandatory Quarantine for Interisland Travel to be Lifted Effective June 16
Recognizing Hawai‘i’s national leadership in controlling the spread of COVID-19, Governor Ige announced the lifting of the 14-day quarantine for interisland travel effective two weeks from tomorrow (Tuesday, June 16, 2020). At an afternoon news briefing at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport, Governor Ige said, “This is an important step for everyone living in Hawai‘i. It will help reunite families and friends who have been separated due to the pandemic. And it’s an important step for the reopening of our kama‘aina economy.” The governor was joined in making the announcement by Senate President Ron Kouchi and Speaker of the House Scott Saiki. Additionally, Attorney General Clare Connors, Tim Sakahara from the Dept. of Transportation, DOH Director Dr. Bruce Anderson, and Hawaiian Airlines President & CEO Peter Ingram were on hand to answer questions. “Lifting the quarantine is great news but flying between islands is going to be a different experience,” Governor Ige said.
Reopening Air Travel More Broadly
The next step in reopening air travel will be the lifting of the quarantine for residents and visitors traveling to Hawai‘I from out of state. Governor Ige commented, “Planning to lift the out-of-state quarantine is being done though an earnest, but careful and thoughtful process. We have seen what has happened to other communities that reopened too quickly. There have been new outbreaks. And many of our largest visitor markets, like California still have large numbers of new cases. We have to make sure that we do not experience a surge that overwhelms our healthcare capacity.” The governor said he expects to make an announcement about reopening mainland and foreign travel to the state next week. He said state leadership is exploring multiple options including only reopening initially to some travel corridors and bubbles and that screening and contact tracing are likely to be elements of the final plan. “Everyone in Hawai‘i has done a great job in coming together to flatten the curve. It’s been difficult, but you followed the mandates and I am proud of what you have achieved,” Governor Ige concluded.
Department of the Attorney General:
New Travel Procedures and Requirements for Interisland Travel
The Governor recognized Attorney General Clare Conners and her team and other state departments for developing plans for the complex process of reopening Neighbor Island travel. Conners indicates the new screening and tracking process will help minimize any new spread of COVID-19 and allow quick response should an outbreak occur. The key components of the new system will include thermal screening at state airports for everyone who travels between islands. Additionally, all travelers will be required to fill out a new travel form that will help health officials track and respond to new coronavirus cases. More details on what’s required will be released soon along with the new travel form.
Department of Transportation:
Detail on What Happens at the Airport When You Travel Interisland
Various state departments were involved in the process leading to today’s announcement of the reopening of interisland travel on June 16. DOT spokesperson Tim Sakahara said, “Part of that process was developing a new form that went through at least a dozen iterations. The main difference between the former arriving passenger forms is the interisland form asks for health related information.” That information will be used by the Dept. of Health in case health experts need to follow up or contact a traveler. Key points of the process include:
- Temperature screening area (elevated temp of 100.4 degrees or greater, no fly)
- Passenger verification before TSA checkpoints for completing of turning in forms
- Forms collected and information verified
- Anyone reporting symptoms to undergo additional screening and/or testing
In addition to having an elevated temperature, refusal to complete the mandatory forms or being on the traveler 14-day quarantine list will disqualify someone from flying. Forms are mandatory for all flight segments, even on the same day.
Office of the Lieutenant Governor:
LG Says People Should Not Be Scared to Go Out
At the afternoon news briefing Lieutenant Gov. Josh Green reiterated that Hawai‘i has done extraordinarily well the past few weeks. No new cases today, no fatalities in a month, and more than 95% of those who have tested positive for COVID-19 have now been cleared. He said he understands, that in spite of these positive statistics, many people are still reluctant to go out into public spaces. “As long as people continue to wear masks, practice good social distancing and hand hygiene, everyone should feel comfortable getting out…to their doctor’s to maintain their health, to visit friends and family in groups of fewer than 10 people and to visit their favorite local restaurants,” Green said. He added that people do need to be prepared for a likely increase in coronavirus cases in Hawai‘i over the next few weeks and months; people should not be alarmed. He remarked, “This is the nature of living with COVID-19 until we see major progress on a treatment or vaccine.”
Governor David Ige at Airport News Briefing
Department of Health:
Four New Cases of COVID-19 Reported Over the Weekend
Today (Monday), there were no (0) new cases of coronavirus reported in Hawai‘i. On Saturday, one (1) new case was reported; an adult from Maui. On Sunday DOH reported three (3) new COVID-19 cases: two (2) adults on O‘ahu and one (1) adult on Maui. Since Feb. 28, 2020, there have been 652 COVID-19 cases recorded in Hawai‘i.
Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, June 1, 2020
|Island of Diagnosis||New Cases||Reported since
(including new cases)
|Total Released from Isolation*|
|Residents Diagnosed outside HI||0||10|
|Total released from isolation||608|
* Includes cases that meet isolation release criteria. ** On Saturday one Hawaii island case was removed. Retested specimen at State Lab and found to be inconclusive.
Laboratory* Testing Data
There were 1,500 additional COVID-19 tests reported via electronic laboratory reporting.
|Total Number of Individuals Tested by Clinical and State Laboratories||Positive||Negative|
*Electronic Laboratory Reporting **14 test results were inconclusive
For more tables visit: https://health.hawaii.gov/docd/
Continued Good Health Practices Encouraged as Hawai‘i Reopens
We are anticipating the low numbers of coronavirus cases reported over the past few weeks may go up as more and more people get out and about. Our healthcare partners have worked hard to ensure they can manage any potential surge in healthcare needs. However, everyone can help maintain the low level of COVID-19 activity in Hawaii by continuing to practice all those things that have become common over the past several months. In the “new normal,” it will be important to be aware of all our close contacts and continue to adhere to physical distancing with those outside our respective “ohana bubbles,” wearing masks especially when physical distancing is challenging, handwashing, and cleaning frequently touched surfaces. All these measures in combination make a positive difference.
Watch a Hawai‘i News Now public service announcement:
Hawai‘i Tourism Authority:
1,469 Passengers Arrive on Sunday
Yesterday, a total of 1,469 people arrived in Hawai‘i including 391 visitors and 476 returning residents. There was a total of 16 arriving flights. This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday, but does not show interisland travel.
AIRPORT ARRIVALS FOR SUNDAY, MAY 31, 2020
|Relocate to Hawai‘i||4||2||104||110|
Monday news release:
Saturday news release:
Department of the Attorney General:
Returning College Student And Visitor Arrested For Quarantine Violation
A student attending college in Hawai‘i was arrested this morning by Special Agents from the Investigation Division of the Dept. of the Attorney General. 21-year-old Venasio Vaipulu was reported by a witness. The witness told the special agents that on May 18 Vaipulu returned from spring break aware that he was under the State’s current 14-day mandatory traveler quarantine. The witness reports Vaipulu left his designated quarantine location nearly daily.
Investigators went to the address looking for Vaipulu to learn that he had moved without informing the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA) of his new residence. He was arrested on two charges; quarantine violation and unsworn falsification to authority. He was booked, charged and his bail was set at $4,000.
Last Thursday, an 18-year-old Victorville, CA woman, who arrived on O‘ahu on May 17 was arrested on the same charges. She said she’d be staying with relatives for a month. Special Agents from the Investigation Division of the Department of the Attorney General report that Makayla Janay Thomas began posting her adventures on Instagram, several days after arriving at a Mililani home. Attorney General Claire Connors commented, “While everyone is anticipating the reopening of interisland travel on June 16, the quarantine rules for all visitors and returning residents from the mainland will remain in effect until further notice. We encourage all travelers to respect the mandatory quarantine, as it has been an important component in helping Hawai‘i have the best metrics in the country, in terms of infection and coronavirus death rates.”
# # #