HONOLULU — Hawaii Gov. David Ige on Thursday said he has authorized the state’s counties to develop agreements with hotels that would allow travelers from out of state to move around resort properties during their 14-day traveler quarantine.
Currently, travelers must stay in their hotel rooms or residence for two weeks after arriving in Hawaii to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Kauai Mayor Derek Kawakami said the plan would have visitors wear a tracking band that would alert security and police if they tried to exit resort grounds or remove the device.
The area travelers are allowed to roam may include beaches next to resort hotels. Residents would still be allowed on those beaches, but would be warned about the possible presence of newly arrived travelers.
Kawakami said he’s talking to resort operators who might be interested in setting up such a program.
Resorts would have to show that they have the systems in place to be able to keep people safe, he said. Kawakami didn’t have an estimate for when such a program might be allowed to begin.
The mayor said he’s been looking at alternatives to the status quo, adding travelers to Kauai continue to try to break quarantine rules, which strains the local police department.
“We are trying to mitigate risk,” Kawakami told reporters during a news conference with the governor.
Maui and Hawaii counties have also indicated they are exploring similar ideas for resorts.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.