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Travelers from Mass. say they don't plan to follow 14-day quarantine rule for Fourth of July weekend

Maine State Police told NEWS CENTER Maine they expect a slight increase in traffic, but will not target out-of-state drivers over COVID-19 restrictions.

KENNEBUNK, Maine — Drivers from states all over the northeast streamed into Maine for the Fourth of July weekend Friday night. 

Cars with license plates from states like New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire filled the Kennebunk Service Plaza parking lot. 

"It's nice to get away from all the hectic craziness," one woman headed to Old Orchard from New Hampshire told NEWS CENTER Maine. 

RELATED: Mass. Gov. 'surprised' over Maine's travel exclusion considering state's promising positivity rate

Most visitors were wearing masks and practicing social distancing as they entered and exited the rest area, but not everyone said they were willing to follow the rules put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic

This week Gov. Mills added New York, New Jersey and Connecticut to the list of states exempt from the 14-day quarantine or testing requirements. New Hampshire and Vermont were already on the list. Massachusetts was not. 

Several travelers from Mass. told NEWS CENTER Maine they did not plan to abide by the quarantine rule.

RELATED: 'It's devastating financially' -- Maine hospitality sales much lower than usual amidst COVID-19

"We're leaving Sunday," one traveler said. "Using hand sanitizer, staying away from everyone."

Maine State Police said more officers will be on patrol over the holiday weekend. They expect at least a 20-percent increase in traffic on the Maine Turnpike compared to recent weekends. 

"We're not really seeing a huge increase in traffic," State Police Sgt. Angela Porter said. "We’re just trying to make sure that everyone’s using the precautions that are recommended by the CDC and the Governor."

RELATED: Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey added to list of states exempt from 14-day quarantine and testing alternative

Porter said that does not mean they will be targeting cars with certain license plates. She said they will only address behavior. 

"There may be a question of, 'Where are you going?' Just natural questions during a routine traffic stop, but most of it at this point is an education," she said.

The Maine Dept. of Transportation is launching a new round of digital signs to help with that education process, including one that says 'Masks work. Wearing is caring.'

"Practice your social distancing and do what you're supposed to do and I think will be okay," one traveler said.

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