Uncertainty sweeps nation as coronavirus shuts down sports, events, travel

White House clarifies travel ban

DETROIT – The coronavirus outbreak has led to a long list of closures, the cancellation of the NCAA Tournament and the suspension of MLB, NHL and NBA seasons.

The lights are also going out on Broadway for a month. New York City’s largest tourist attraction has been shut down after the governor banned all gatherings of 500 or more people.

In Metro Detroit, major districts across the area are canceling classes Friday to prepare for possible remote learning.

The cancellations have come fast and furious all day. They don’t just include professional and college sports, but also soccer games, kindergarten concerns, long-planned anniversary trips and much more.

As the United States tries to slow the spread of the virus but shutting it down, residents have been left feeling concerned and confused.

Airports were left empty Thursday after President Donald Trump announced sweeping travel restrictions from Europe to the U.S. They’re not as strict as they first sounded, though.

“I was kind of panicked because the airline had no idea what to do, what to say,” traveler Gary Erickson said.

The White House clarified the 30-day ban, which starts Friday and will only apply to foreign nationals. U.S. citizens and their families can re-enter the country, but they have to self-quarantine for two weeks. There are 26 European countries affected -- not including the UK.

European goods aren’t banned. With now more than 1,300 cases reported across the country, Trump proposed help for the sick and small business owners, as well as a payroll tax cut.

Lawmakers are scrambling to find common ground and show Washington is helping those in need.

“If their children can’t go to school because the school’s closed, how do they afford childcare?” Rep. Nancy Pelosi asked.

Senate Republicans are voicing opposition to a House proposal including paid sick leave, food assistance and free coronavirus testing.

Top health official Dr. Anthony Fauci said right now, the U.S. testing system is failing.

“The idea of anybody getting it easily the way people in other countries are doing it -- we’re not set up for that,” Fauci said.

But there is progress. NBC News captured a video inside the lab at the University of Pittsburgh Center for Vaccine Research, where scientists are working right now to find a treatment. The highly secure facility is just one of 12 labs nationwide to be given a sample of the virus.

With some lawmakers now in self-quarantine, the Capitol and White House announced Thursday that they’re cutting off public tours, limiting visitors to official business.

White House officials said Trump has no plans to be tested or go into self-quarantine after attending events last weekend with a senior Brazilian official who has since tested positive.

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