Watch CBS News

Colorado's Coronavirus Fight: At Least 75,000 Tourists Visit Over July 4th Weekend

DENVER (CBS4) - During a scheduled news conference on Tuesday, Gov. Jared Polis says he offered hospital beds to surrounding states dealing with coronavirus spikes and subsequent hospital bed shortages. Polis said he would hope they would do the same should Colorado suffer similarly.

colorado flag mountains rocky generic
(credit: Matt Kroschel/CBS)

"We certainly want to do as best we can, as a state, and of course that means, to the extent we can helping our brothers and sisters in Arizona," he said. "There are extraordinary precautions that are taken in hospitals to protect our health care workers and doctors that might be attended to anybody who's a victim of coronavirus."

The Colorado Hospital Association tells CBS4 they train for transferring patients during a disaster. However, because of the uniqueness of COVID-19, both hospitals (sending and receiving) would need to approve the transfer.

Polis also noted the number of people from states with large spikes who visited Colorado during the July 4th weekend.

"We estimate there are between 75,000 and 100,000 Texans, Arizonans and Californians that were in our state."

While the risk of our own coronavirus spike, Polis said there's no legal way to keep people out of Colorado.

polis 7.14.20
Jared Polis (credit: CBS)

"People can drive here, and frankly we don't know who they are, where they are, and we're all Americans. It's one of the reasons that we need a nationally-coordinated strategy on coronavirus that thus far has been lacking."


He also noted a 14-day quarantine for tourists is not viable.

"It's not realistic because it's voluntary, and it's unenforceable," Polis said. "Really the bottom line is that every Coloradan needs to act like every person they come in contact with as if they have COVID."

He added, "Frankly I'm worried that Coloradans are taking our fragile success and our success relative to some of our neighboring states as some sort of signal that we're out of the woods when that is far from the truth. We're not even close."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.