© 2021 Maine Public
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Maine Turnpike Officials: Heavy Traffic Forecast For Holiday Weekend

Robert F. Bukaty
Associated Press
In this Feb. 2011 file photo, traffic approaches Maine Turnpike toll booths in Gardiner, Maine.

Maine Turnpike Authority officials say they expect traffic on the roadway this holiday weekend to exceed last year's "banner year."

Turnpike Outreach Coordinator Rebecca Grover says that's likely the result of a few factors, "good weather, good economy, lower gas prices - you know, people are out and about."


According to the Authority, traffic on the roadway is up in general 2.6% this year, when compared to 2018. Grover says the agency is ready for what could be a record-setter.


"So we make sure that we are staffed correctly at the toll plazas," Grover says. "We also have maintenance crews out there who will patrol the road for the whole weekend to help people if they're stranded, to clear away any of the debris on the road so that we can make sure things are flowing as smoothly as possible."


And - if you're wondering - yes, Turnpike mascot Miles the Moose will be out Monday to hand out small gifts when traffic backs up.

Tie-ups can be annoying, but Grover says that's not the Authority's biggest concern.

"The biggest thing that we're seeing is people being distracted," she says. "So just put the phone down, just focus on the driving. And get to where you're going before you make that phone call or send that text."