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Yucatan adds coronavirus prevention measures at schools, highways and airport

No travel restrictions planned as spring break season approaches

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Yucatan Gov. Mauricio Vila addresses reporters at the Merida International Airport. Photo: Courtesy

With the World Health Organization declaring a coronavirus pandemic, Yucatan state officials on Thursday announced a series of preventative measures.

The state already canceled a huge, widely anticipated convention — the Tianguis Turístico — a blow to the region’s economy.

Gov. Mauricio Vila Dosal then announced additional actions to prevent the deadly virus from entering Yucatan:

Domestic flights will be cleaned and maintain air filters to a standard identical to international flights, beginning today.

Also today, health checkpoints will be installed in the collection booths on the Merida-Cancun highway, and during the weekend in the booths on the Mérida-Campeche and Mérida-Chetumal highways.

This weekend, all passengers in the CAME-ADO bus terminals will be monitored for symptoms.

Starting this Tuesday, teachers will screen students for symptoms in all Yucatan schools.

National officials said on Thursday that Mexico was not planning to clamp down on international travel to the country or close its borders due to the coronavirus outbreak despite major U.S. curbs announced a day earlier.

Anticipating the arrival of thousands of tourists from North America in the spring break holiday period, Mexico’s government said it saw no grounds yet to follow tougher measures taken by an increasing number of countries trying to stop the virus.

Standing alongside President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell said there was no scientific evidence that tightening access to ports of entry would play a significant role in protecting public health.

“Restricting international travel to Mexico is not planned, nor is it being considered. Nor is closing borders or maritime ports,” he told reporters.

Globally, as of Friday morning 138,611 active coronavirus cases were counted, and 5,083 patients have died. But 91 percent of all cases are classified as mild, and 70,725 people have recovered fully.

With information from Reuters.

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