Early response to Governor Abbott’s COVID-19 travel orders

Early response to Governor Abbott’s COVID-19 travel orders

SHELBY COUNTY, Texas (KTRE) - Louisiana's positive case count of the novel coronavirus grew Sunday to more than 3,500 cases.

In response to this, Texas governor Greg Abbott announced an executive order requiring a 14-day self quarantine period for some people traveling into Texas from Louisiana.

The order went into effect at noon today.

Just a bridge and the Sabine River separate the two states, an area that many travel to get to and from work and home.

“There’s a lot of people that live on this side of the bridge, this side of the river, and the other side that work and have property on both sides,” said Newton Johnson, Shelby County Pct. 3 Constable. “They come over to feed their cattle. It’s been quite a little bit upsetting to some folks.”

A pharmacy right past the Sabine River, in Texas, said they've heard from many concerned customers.

“The main thing is people are worried that they can’t get their medicine,” said pharmacy technician Takavien. “You know, they’re calling, scrambling. ‘Hey the bridge is supposed to be closed,’ but we’re just like, it’s open, for medical purposes. Now you can’t go down to Brookshire’s, but it’s open.”

The bridge is open and will remain open for the time being.

"To my knowledge, it hasn't happened as of yet,” Johnson said. “It could come to it a little later, but at this point in time, it has not been shut down."

Johnson said his main job is to assist DPS.

"Our job, our principal job is to, at this point in time, as far as the virus is concerned, is working with DPS, the Department of Public Safety,” Johnson said. “And assisting them in whatever they may need some help in."

According to Abbott's proclamation, DPS will be enforcing this executive order. Troopers will have a form each person will have to fill out, designating a quarantine location in Texas, provide a full name, date of birth, home address, telephone number, and driver license or passport information.

Providing false information on that form is a criminal offense.

Governor Abbott says DPS special agents will conduct unannounced visits to certain quarantine locations to ensure people are complying.

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