Earl blamed for low holiday traffic on Maine Turnpike drops

Posted Sept. 07, 2010, at 9:04 a.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — Maine Turnpike officials say the threat of Hurricane Earl led to a drop-off in turnpike traffic over the Labor Day holiday weekend.

The Maine Turnpike Authority says northbound traffic Friday — when Earl was making its way into New England — at the York toll plaza was down 18.7 percent from the same day last year.

On Monday, the number of vehicles driving southbound through the plaza on their way out-of-state was down 4.8 percent from Labor Day in 2009.

Still, officials say overall turnpike traffic has been up this summer, by 3 percent in June, 4.5 percent in July and 2 percent in August.