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COVID-19 Updates

We are all in this together.

The Maine Turnpike Authority is working hard to keep our customers and employees as safe as possible during the evolving situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.  As the primary connection for economic activity in the State, we are working to minimize disruptions to travel while taking appropriate measures to keep everyone safe and healthy.

 

Steps we are taking currently: 

Service Plazas 
At our Service Plazas, we are coordinating with HMS Host on the best practices during this difficult time. HMS Host manages hundreds of airport restaurants and travel plazas around the world and is well versed in facilities management. 

Some of the protocols that have been undertaken so far include increased cleaning, discontinuing use of the electric hand dryers in the bathrooms, strategic closing of some restroom stalls to establish proper social distancing, removal of tables and dine-in services, and updating employees on the best practices to help limit the spread of this virus.

E-ZPass Customer Service Center
Maine Turnpike’s E-ZPass Customer Service Center will reopen on June 22, 2020 at 8:00 am. 
 
We continue to be on reduced hours of operation, which are Monday through Friday 8 AM to 5 PM. 
 
We are limiting the number of people entering the building in order to keep customers at a safe distance. If there is a line inside, you may be asked to wait outside.
 
In an effort to reduce the need for coming to the service center, please do whatever you can online, by phone, or by mail if possible. For example, if you need mounting strips for your transponder call the customer service center at 1-888-MTA-PASS to have them mailed to you.  You can also request these from within your account online:  From the drop down menu “MY EZ Pass” select Order Tag Mounting Strips (you will need to your account log on information to order the mounting strips).
 
If you need to make account changes you may do so by any of the following methods: Downloaded forms may then be mailed to us at: PO Box 3858, Portland, ME 04104-3858
 
 
If you would like to sign up for E-ZPass and pick up a transponder, please do the application online OR print out the application and fill out before arrival.
 
Your patience is greatly appreciated during this time.


Cash Toll Collection

The Turnpike has consulted with medical advisors and studied CDC guidelines.

Each motorist is in a vehicle and the collector is in a booth.  The distance between them is through the open air.  Any contact is momentary.  There is little risk of viral transmission for either motorist or collector---certainly less than where people share the same interior space.

Collectors are at double arms' length from motorists and it takes only a second or two to complete most transactions.   Because traffic is down, transaction frequency is reduced.  The factors of distance, shorter duration and reduced frequency diminish any risk of person-to-person transfer.

Collectors wear nitrile gloves that are readily available.  Each toll is supplied with disinfectant spray and wipes for regular use.

Three-quarters of Turnpike patrons use E-ZPass.  Most drivers who enter cash lanes are there because they prefer to pay cash or they need a receipt.  A driver without E-ZPass who prefers not to handle cash still has options:

1.  Pass through any lane and pay later by calling 1-800-682-7277 from 8 AM to 5 PM.

2.  Pass through any lane and pay later at ezpassmaineturnpike.com.

3.  Use correct change (14 of the tolls are just an even dollar for a passenger car).

4.  Use an alternate route.

5.  Have the collector fill out a “No funds” slip to pay by mail, phone or internet.

6.  Sign up for E-ZPass or borrow a transponder.

The Turnpike has been collecting cash since it opened 73 years ago.  Metropolitan agencies that have closed their cash booths typically raise tolls in order to operate large license plate research centers with hundreds of people working in close quarters.  It is not a good working environment---especially now.

The Maine Turnpike serves an essential public function.  Even during the pandemic, the road is used each day by over 100,000 vehicles, many of them to carry medical supplies, food, and hospital patients.

Recently Turnpike maintenance crews were out for 14 hours to plow snow all night and to reopen the highway when a tractor trailer had overturned, blocking the road and spilling 60 gallons of diesel fuel.

Everyone who works on the Turnpike, including 34 Maine State Police officers, are paid entirely from tolls with no support from state or federal taxes.

These are scary times for everyone.  We appreciate public support as the Turnpike continues to provide a necessary service while taking reasonable precautions and providing options to its patrons.

Travel safely and be well.


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