Delaware travel ban created conflict

    The statewide travel ban that had been included in Delaware’s state of emergency left some residents stuck between a rock and a hard place.

    The statewide travel ban that had been part of Delaware’s ongoing state of emergency left some residents stuck between a rock and a hard place.

    The state’s ban on travel was supposed to apply to everyone, except essential emergency personnel, but a number of employers tried to open today and demanded their employees report to work.

    “There are very specific people who are considered essential,” said the Department of Highway Safety’s Andrea Summers.  “We are urging employers to realize there is a travel ban and if their employees are not considered essential, to take that into consideration before they put their employees and others at risk by asking them to violate that ban.”

    Summers concedes there’s now way to enforce the ban on employers.

    “At this point, we’re not in the position to tell businesses not to open,” Summers said.

    What the state is doing is reminding them some of the problems additional cars on the road create.

    “They’re becoming disabled and stuck in snow drifts.  They’re blocking the way of emergency snow removal equipment and, in some cases, emergency responders trying to get to people with medical needs.”  Summers pointed out, ” So, it really is kind of a ripple effect and we’re just asking them to take that into consideration before they decide to open.”

    Some businesses were listening.

    Christiana Mall has announced its intention to open today, but has pushed back a planned noon opening until 2 pm .

    “This may change depending on the next meeting regarding the state of emergency,” said Christiana Mall spokesperson Kristi Betz.

    Summers says the Governor Markell’s office and emergency management officials will continue to assess the need for the state of emergency and the travel ban throughout the afternoon.

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