“Screening would make a difference”: State senator pushing for COVID-19 testing at Bradley International Airport

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WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (WTNH) — Calls are growing louder to start screening passengers for COVID-19 as they arrive at Connecticut’s Bradley International Airport

At the height of the pandemic, air travel at Bradley was down 98 percent. But carriers are adding flights and now rolling back some social distancing measures ahead of July 4. And with virus rates growing in other states, some lawmakers are pushing for on-site testing at Bradley. 

Democratic State Senator Matthew Lesser, (D), Cromwell, Middletown said the state needs to start screening passengers.

Connecticut now has one of the lowest transmission rates in the country, but in places like Arizona, Texas and Florida, they are seeing a spike in coronavirus cases. 

On Monday, June 29, ten flights arrived from Florida to Bradley International Airport.

Lesser said the state should be screening passengers, and if they have any symptoms, they should be tested on the spot. He said he spoke with the higher-ups at Bradley and they are on board with the idea too.

“To see if any of them are bringing back the virus,” he explained. “Obviously, it’s not 100% unless you are testing everybody, but I think a screening would make a difference and give the public some assurance that we are doing everything we can to protect Connecticut.”

Right now, the state’s policy is to tell these travelers to quarantine for fourteen days. Governor Ned Lamont said they’re looking into screening and he’s actually talking with the airlines on Tuesday about on-site testing.

Lamont also said it’s complicated, because it’s unclear who would pay for all of it. 

The Governor also says the Airport Authority is supposed to report how many visitors are traveling here from hot spots, but his office hasn’t received any of that information. The governor plans on speaking with airport officials today.

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