Multiple COVID-19 vaccination sites were forced to close on the East Coast on Monday as a major winter storm packing strong winds dumped heavy snow.
States that have announced their CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus vaccination sites will be closed, or appointments rescheduled, include New Jersey, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Rhode Island, and Connecticut.
All six of New Jersey’s large scale “vaccine mega-sites” were shut on Monday as part of a state of emergency declared by Gov. Phil Murphy over the weekend.
“Each of our vaccine mega-sites is CLOSED today due to the weather,” Murphy, a Democrat, announced, adding that people who already had an appointment scheduled at the Atlantic, Middlesex, or Morris site will receive information to have their appointment rescheduled.
The State of Emergency I declared as of last evening remains in effect.
We urge everyone who does not need to be out on the roads to STAY IN.
If you don’t need to be out, go back to your house.
If you’re in your house, don’t go out. pic.twitter.com/YQBebOqGql
— Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) February 1, 2021
Forecasters predicted Sussex, Warren, and Morris counties in the northern New Jersey to see an additional 16 to 22 inches of snow. A winter storm warning will remain in effect until Tuesday for much of the state.
Authorities in New York City also declared a state of emergency and CCP virus vaccine appointments in downtown New York were also postponed for safety concerns due to the winter storm, Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa announced in a statement on Monday.
“Due to the expected impacts from the impending Nor’Easter, we are rescheduling vaccine appointments at: SUNY Stony Brook, Jones Beach, Aqueduct Racetrack, the Javits Center, and the Westchester County Center,” she said.
People who had an appointment scheduled at any of these sites will receive an email or text message to reschedule their appointment to later this week.
Appointments at the six pop-up vaccination sites in the Bronx and Brooklyn were also rescheduled to Wednesday, according to the statement.
“This winter storm will be dangerous with heavy snowfall and strong winds,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Twitter as he announced a winter weather emergency declaration and restricting nonessential travel in the city. “If you can stay home, stay home,” he added.
BREAKING: beginning 6 AM tomorrow, February 1, nonessential travel will be restricted in New York City. This winter storm will be dangerous with heavy snowfall and strong winds. If you can stay home, stay home. Keep the roads clear for emergency vehicles. pic.twitter.com/S7xPoVLGlt
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) February 1, 2021
In Connecticut, Gov. Ned Lamont issued a state of emergency over the weekend and postponed most of the vaccinations scheduled for Monday.
“During this storm, we are expecting the rate of snow to come down fast, falling at rates of up to one to two inches at times, which will cause whiteout conditions that will make travel dangerous,” he said in a statement.
“I am urging everyone in Connecticut to make plans now so that you can avoid all unnecessary travel throughout the day on Monday, particularly during the afternoon when snowfall rates are forecast to be at their heaviest.”
The governor said Monday the winter storm is not impacting the delivery of vaccines as he also announced a travel ban on certain tractor-trailers.
“The vaccines, kept refrigerated, are good for eight to 10 days, so that’s not a problem,” he said. “And if this is three or four weeks since your first vaccination, if it gets put off a few days, don’t worry. It will still stay very effective.”
DC, Rhode Island, and Philadelphia
Leaders in Washington D.C., Philadelphia, and Rhode Island suspended all operations at CCP virus testing sites on Monday. Vaccination sites are likely to go forward as planned but updates will be announced based on weather reports in the coming days.
In Rhode Island, multiple regional vaccination clinics also weren’t allowed to operate. People who had appointments for Monday at regional vaccination clinics in Bristol, Providence, and East Greenwich will be contacted directly about rescheduling.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.