The Lawrence Police Department will be on the lookout for people who aren't wearing masks in public in a new enforcement initiative.
Lawrence Mayor Daniel Rivera told The Eagle Tribune that the patrols will target public places and businesses Monday through Friday over two different shifts. Violators could face a $300 fine.
Masks must be worn in various situations in the city, including in public buildings, at the gas pumps and on public transportation.
Lawrence has one of the highest coronavirus infection rates in the state. Nearly 100 people have died from the virus in the city, according to the Department of Public Health, and there were 2,386 cases as of Thursday.
For the last two weeks, city officials have been educating people about the mandate in advance of the enforcement. The city instituted its own mask mandate on April 28, ahead of the statewide order.
“Lawrence continues to have some of the highest Coronavirus counts in the Commonwealth," Rivera said in a statement about the local mask order last month. “As a community, we need to work hard to stop the spread.”
Gov. Charlie Baker issued an emergency order requiring face coverings earlier this month as the state battles to control the coronavirus outbreak.
The order went into effect on May 6 and applies to everyone over the age of two in all indoor public places and outside when social distancing can't be properly maintained. Masks must also be worn on public transportation and in stores.
Face coverings must cover your nose and mouth and can include masks, scarves or bandanas. Medical masks should be preserved for health care workers and first responders