Hawaii has reportedly encouraged all the visitors to postpone their vacations for the next 30 days due to the coronavirus outbreak. Speaking at a news conference in Honolulu on March 17, Hawaii Governor David Ige urged the guests to reschedule their trip for later as the state was struggling to combat the spread of the COVID-19.
Heavily dependent on tourism, the state has declared the shutdown of all the pubs, bars and table service at restaurants. Additionally, assembly of more than 10 people has been prohibited as containment effort, and all worship services have been halted, as per the reports. The restaurants, however, are allowed to serve food through drive-through, takeaway and delivery services.
“The actions I’m announcing today may seem extreme to some of you, and we know that it will have negative effects to our economy,” Ige said. “But we are confident that taking aggressive actions now will allow us to have a quicker recovery when this crisis is over.”
Hawaii, that witnessed 10 million visitors last year, accounting for nearly one-fifth of local jobs from tourism, has sealed off all public activities and deferred several events. The state has shut schools and imposed work from home measures for the employees to curb the disease transmission, confirmed media reports. Igne reportedly said that the state did not want to overwhelm its limited healthcare system. Hawaii has at least 14 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.
According to the reports, the National Park Service confirmed that the Pearl Harbor National Memorial in Honolulu was shut down, following guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and public health officials. USS Arizona Memorial, which honours 1,177 Marines martyred during the 1941 Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbour, has also been sealed off. The memorial witnessed over 1.8 million visitors annually.
The state Department of Public Safety reportedly suspended statewide evictions in response to the governor’s emergency proclamation for the coronavirus, as per the agency reports. The judiciary limited the court proceedings across Hawaii. Suspension of evictions was effective immediately. Honolulu is also reportedly extending the expiration dates on driver's licenses and state identification cards across the state by a minimum of 90 days, confirmed agency report. Hawaiian Airlines declared suspension of operation of flights between Honolulu and Sapporo, Japan beginning April 2 until July 18 in a bid to stem the impact of coronavirus transmission.
(With inputs from AP)