Massachusetts boots Wyoming off list of states exempt from travel rules

Here's the latest on the quarantine requirements for out-of-state visitors.

A herd of bison grazes in the Lamar Valley of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. Matthew Brown / AP

It’s unclear how many people took advantage of the two weeks during which Wyoming was exempt from the quarantine rules in Massachusetts.

But that time is now up.

The state’s Department of Public Health announced Friday afternoon that it is removing Wyoming from the list of “lower-risk” states exempt from the rules requiring most out-of-state visitors to Massachusetts to either self-quarantine for 14 days or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test.

The change — which takes effect at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday — comes amid a noticeable uptick in coronavirus cases in the country’s least populous state; Wyoming reported its largest single-day increase in new infections since the beginning of the pandemic on Wednesday.


Massachusetts requires states to meet two criteria to be exempt from the out-of-state travel rules: their average number of daily cases per 100,000 residents must be below six and their positive test rate must be below 5 percent (both indicators are monitored weekly and measured on a seven-day rolling average).

According to the tracking website used by the state, Wyoming was averaging 11.2 cases per 100,000 residents and a 7.4 percent positive test rate as of Friday.


Officials announced Friday that Wyoming will be removed from the list of low-risk states, effective Saturday.

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The Equality State’s removal leaves 10 other states on the fluctuating lower-risk list, which continues to be tweaked on a weekly basis. As of Saturday, travelers coming and returning from Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington state are not subject to the travel rules in Massachusetts.

Rhode Island also remains the only New England state subject to the quarantine rules, though there are some exceptions for cross-border trips, such as for work, church, grocery shopping, and medical care.

Those who break the out-of-state travel rules face a $500 fine if caught.

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