Karina Shagren with Washington state’s Emergency Management Division says the state is assessing airfields, housing and resources that could accommodate Americans being repatriated from regions abroad experiencing coronavirus outbreaks.
The preparations are in response to a request from the federal government to be prepared to provide quarantine or housing areas.
“Washington state right now is just doing an informal analysis to look at what capabilities, what resources we might have to accept a repatriation flight,” said Shagren. “At this point there’s nothing to suggest that one of these flights is scheduled, this is just a pre-planning, a prudent measure, just to see what we might have available in the event that we are told to prepare for one of these flights.”1
The request of Washington came from the Department of Health and Human Services, based on the U.S. Repatriation Program. Washington state already has an emergency repatriation plan2, updated last in 2019.
1. WA state prepares for Americans returning from China amid coronavirus outbreak KUOW
2. State Emergency Repatriation Plan State of Washington