Marylanders are advised to not travel to Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, and Texas.

By Cailey Rizzo
July 30, 2020
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Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan has expanded face mask rules in his state and issued a travel warning against nine other states.

Starting July 31 at 5 p.m., everyone age 5 or older must wear a face mask in public buildings including restaurants, gyms, offices, casinos, and places of worship. Masks are also required outdoors when people are unable to maintain a distance of six feet. The order expands on April’s requirements to wear face masks while on public transit and in grocery stores and pharmacies.

Maryland state health officials also released a public travel advisory cautioning residents of the state not to journey to states where the rate of positive COVID-19 tests is higher than 10 percent which includes Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, and Texas.

The state has advised that those who are returning to Maryland from the nine states undergo a coronavirus test and quarantine until they receive the results. Out-of-state travelers are also encouraged to take a COVID-19 test 72 hours ahead of arrival.

A waiter at Raku, an Asian restaurant in Bethesda, wears a protective face mask as serve customers outdoors amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Sarah Silbiger/Stringer via Getty

Maryland’s coronavirus numbers have been steadily increasing over the past couple of weeks. The state has reported more than 87,000 confirmed cases and 3,357 deaths, according to data from the state health department.

Maryland has postponed moving forward in its reopening plans, but restrictions haven’t greatly been added or rolled back, according to The Baltimore Sun.

At a press conference, Hogan said the mask rules were, “fact-based, apolitical, and solidly grounded in science. While it can be an inconvenience, especially in the heat, wearing a mask is the single best mitigation strategy that we have to fight the virus.”

Several other states have also issued new guidelines about interstate travel during the pandemic. Travelers from COVID-19 hotspots who are headed to New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are required to quarantine for two weeks after their arrival. Chicago has also established a list of states whose travelers will have to quarantine upon arrival.