New England

Here's How Crowds Responded to Labor Day Social Distancing Enforcement in Mass.

Communities such as Chelsea, Lawerence and Lynn were the focus of enforcement efforts over Labor Day weekend

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In an attempt to make sure people were social distancing during Labor Day festivities, health officials had enforcement teams set up in several areas.

They focused on areas that are being pinpointed as communities with high-transmission rates, including places like Chelsea, Lawrence and Lynn.

The goal was to make sure people were social distancing and following the guidelines in place to try to keep the virus from spreading.

State leaders were not happy with the possibility of people getting together in large crowds. Gov. Charlie Baker has said most of all that this enforcement was being done to send a message.

“My wife and I are in that age bracket that are high risk," Malden resident Al Jensen said. "In the back of your mind, you're always thinking 'If I get the virus, what will happen? Will it be mild? Will we have to be hospitalized?' You don't know."

State and local authorities were out all Labor Day weekend and were back again Monday. Anyone not following the rules was subject to a hefty fine, officials said.

Gov. Charlie Baker will be enforcing a COVID crackdown today.

At Revere Beach, there were certainly crowds of beachgoers on Labor Day, but it appeared most seemed to be socially distancing, and a COVID caravan was making the rounds.

"We are raising awareness of COVID-19," said Bianca Riverio-McCray, part of the coronavirus outreach.

Field crews passed out all the tools needed for proper protection, including pamphlets, hand sanitizer and masks.

"Four people approached me today with hand sanitizers and information on coronavirus this morning," beachgoer Holly Brooksbank said. "That was really nice."

It was one of 16 spots where state officials are working with local police to encourage and enforce coronavirus precautions. 

"Everyone is keeping to themselves right now if you look around nobody’s even talking to each other," beachgoer Yaroslav Sakharov said.

"People are like walking around and stuff I see everyone with their face mask on," beachgoer Matthew Batacan said.

Beachgoers were taking other steps to be safe, as well, and most agreed that particularly in a pandemic, it's a welcome treat to be on the becah.

"We just haven’t been outside in a while because of all the isolation stuff, so it’s just like nice to be outside," one man said.

Another woman said, "Because I think people need fresh air."

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