All travellers in the US will be required to wear face masks under new rules imposed by regulators.
The edict from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requires passengers on aircraft, ships, ferries, trains, subways, buses and ride-shares to wear masks from tomorrow (Tuesday).
The CDC continues to impose a no sail order of cruise ships operating in US waters.
It is unclear whether the new face mask regulations, which form part of new president Joe Biden’s efforts to combat the surge of Covid-19 across the US, will remain in place when cruise ships are allowed to resume sailing.
However, the CDC said on Saturday: “Transportation operators must require all persons on board to wear masks when boarding, disembarking, and for the duration of travel.
“Today’s order from CDC is part of a comprehensive, science-driven, US government response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“One component of the whole-of-government response is taking actions related to reducing virus spread through travel. Transmission of the virus through travel has led to – and continues to lead to – interstate and international spread of the virus.”
CDC director Dr Rochelle Walensky said: “America’s transportation systems are essential.
“Given how interconnected most transportation systems are across our nation and the world, when infected persons travel on public conveyances without wearing a mask and with others who are not wearing masks, the risk of interstate and international transmission can grow quickly.
“CDC recommends that non-essential travel be avoided; however, for those who must travel, additional measures are being put in place to help prevent the spread of the virus.
“Masks are most likely to reduce the spread of COVID-19 when they are widely and consistently used by all people in public settings.”
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