Travelers looking to cross the land border into Canada or Mexico will have to wait at least another month after the Department of Homeland Security extended closures at both borders due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Department of Homeland Security’s Acting Secretary, Chad Wolf, tweeted the news on Thursday.
“Based on the success of the existing restrictions and close collaboration with Mexico and Canada, @DHSgov will continue to limit non-essential travel at our land ports of entry with Canada and Mexico until Aug. 20,” he wrote.
Following the announcement, he added that “close collaboration with our neighbors has allowed us to respond to #COVID19 in a North American approach and slow the travel-related spread of the virus.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau posted the update to his Twitter on Thursday. He also announced the news in a press conference, Reuters and CTV News reported.
“Update on our border: Non-essential travel between Canada and the US remains restricted,” Trudeau wrote. “And as we continue to fight COVID-19, we have agreed to extend the current border measures by another 30 days – until August 21st – to keep people in both our countries safe.”
USA TODAY has reached out to government officials regarding the difference in the dates presented by Trudeau and Wolf.
On Tuesday, Mexico’s Foreign Affairs ministry tweeted that “after reviewing the development of the spread of COVID-19” that Mexico had proposed to the United States the extension of nonessential land travel restrictions for an additional 30 days.
The restrictions were originally announced in mid-March and were extended in April, May and, most recently, in June.
“We’re going to keep working closely with our American neighbors to keep people safe on both sides of the border,” Trudeau said at a press conference, according to Reuters.
The latest extension comes amid surges in nearly half of U.S. states. Florida has reported 75,291 new cases in the last seven days. By way of contrast, the entire nation of Canada has reported 1,895 new cases over the same period.
According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Washington State has the most cases of any border state with 4,772. Minnesota has 4,037. Upstate New York has 2,529, though the state has 4,640 with the New York City area’s 2,111 cases factored in. Idaho (3,350 cases) is the only other state with a four-digit number for the last week.
Border crossing points like the one between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, will be closed for at least another month.
Vermont, which requires most visitors to quarantine for 14 days had the fewest new cases at 50. Maine, which also requires visitors to quarantine unless they can present a recent negative COVID-19 test, only had 126. New York State has also issued a quarantine order for visitors from hotspot states since the Canadian border closure was last extended.
New York quarantine list updated: New Mexico, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin added, Delaware removed
Domestic travel restrictions: These states still require travelers to self-quarantine or present negative COVID-19 test
The closures do not affect people who are flying between the U.S. and Canada or Mexico.
According to the Canadian Border Services Agency, anyone who is not a citizen or permanent resident of that country must prove they are traveling for an essential purpose, are only transiting or are an immediate family member of a citizen or permanent resident. They must also have a plan to quarantine for 14 days, unless exempted.
Americans who are returning to the U.S. are exempted from the border closures.
The restrictions haven’t stopped some Americans from trying to cross into Canada anyway. According to the Canadian Border Services Agency, 10,329 Americans were turned away from Canada between March 22 and July 12, and around a quarter of them had crossed hoping to sightsee, CTV News reported.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: US-Canada, US-Mexico border closures extended into late August