Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo warned about the possible arrival of a variant of the coronavirus Sunday found in the United Kingdom, and demanded that the federal government take steps to prevent its spread to the U.S.
Pointing out that other countries, including Canada, had begun barring travelers from the United Kingdom, Cuomo said the federal government should consider a travel ban and testing of passengers before they board planes to the U.S.
“The European countries have done a ban, we haven’t, and today that variant is getting on a plane and landing in JFK,” Cuomo said. “This is the mistake we made. Where is HHS? Where is the CDC? Where is the NIH? This is the same mistake and literally 6 flights a day, and all it takes is one person. All it takes is one. The Port Authority has no authority to ban passengers, health monitor passengers, it’s federal. Why at a minimum you wouldn’t require a test like the 120 other countries, or why you wouldn’t consider a ban like the other European countries? But doing nothing is negligent; it’s grossly negligent just like the Spring, because doing nothing is doing something.”
The new, highly contagious mutated virus has been reported in recent days in the United Kingdom, as the country imposed a lockdown in the London area to try to control the virus flareup.
Cuomo also reported another 123 Covid-19 deaths.