Troopers at coastal Sussex checkpoints inform out of staters about governor’s order

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The Delaware State Police conducted multiple checkpoints over the weekend in coastal Sussex County.  

The stops were tied to Gov. John Carney’s declaration that orders out of state residents to stay home or face quarantine.

On Friday, a checkpoint was conducted in Claymont on the northern edge of the state.

The checkpoints, a part of the effort to halt the spread of coronavirus, occurred between 9  a.m. and 5  p.m., Saturday and Sunday. There have also been reports of individual vehicles being stopped, with drivers getting a heads up on the governor’s order. 

The order calls for visitors coming to Delaware to stay in quarantine for 14 weeks or return home.

Coastal Sussex County has a  number of part-time residents whose main homes are out of state.

This order authorizes any Delaware law enforcement officer to stop a vehicle driving within the state simply because it is displaying an out-of-state tag. This authorization does not apply to vehicles traveling on I-95, I-295, or I-495.

On Saturday the checkpoints took place on Plantation Road. south of John J. Williams Hwy., Coastal Highway. southbound at Route  1A, and northbound on Coastal Highway, south of Bethany.  A total of 1,507 vehicles passed through the three checkpoints – 1,284 being Delaware vehicles and 223 being from out of state.

On Sunday  checkpoints took place on  Route 113 in the area of Route 20, south of Millsboro, Route  24 in the Long Neck area and again on northbound Coastal Hwy. south of Bethany. A total of 1,126 passed through the checkpoints on this day, 872 from Delaware and 254 from out of state.

As vehicles proceeded through the checkpoints, those displaying out of state tags were stopped. The driver was then asked a limited number of questions related to their recent travel and purpose for entering Delaware, troopers reported.

The driver was then informed of the governor’s declaration and advised that if they are coming into Delaware from out-of-state, they are required by law to self-quarantine for 14 days or immediately return to their home state.

No arrests were made during what was described as an exercise to educate motorists on the order, which comes with criminal penalties.

Patrols throughout the state are expected to continue. The purpose of the patrols and checkpoints is to achieve voluntary compliance with the order.

Thes stops are intended to serve the public welfare by helping to prevent and contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

For information regarding the Governor’s State of Emergency Declaration and associated restrictions log on to: https://de.gov/coronavirus

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