Travelers wait to check-in for a flight within the international terminal at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) in San Francisco, California on Tuesday, May 11, 2021.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Fully vaccinated and flying? You still need to wear a mask.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday, fully vaccinated people There is no longer any need to wear masks indoors and do not have to distance themselves physically even in this setting.
But a federal rule that requires all air, rail and bus travelers over 2 years to be in effect, the Transportation Security Administration said Thursday. They are also needed in bus and train stations and at airports. This policy expires on September 14th.
Airlines called for masks at the start of the pandemic about a year ago and banned hundreds of customers who failed to comply. Airlines now expect travel will continue to recover in the summer after vaccinating more people and reopening attractions.
United Airlines said the carrier will lift its mask requirement if the federal government does so. At the moment it will “continue to honor this mandate and remind our customers that masks must be worn on our aircraft and in our terminals while this requirement is in effect.”
“The CDC’s updated guidelines for fully vaccinated individuals continue to require all travelers on airplanes and at airports to wear face masks, and US airlines will enforce flight requirements for as long as the federal mandate exists,” a group spokesman said.
It’s not clear how airlines would check passengers’ vaccination status, if any, if CDC relaxes guidelines on air travel and other modes of transport.
Cabin crew unions, whose members had to enforce airline policies, asked the Biden administration to grant a mask mandate to give the policy more weight. This mandate came into force in February and was extended last month.
The Federal Aviation Administration issued a “Zero tolerance“On board recruiting policies and fines of up to $ 35,000, with an increase noted in such cases, some of which affected passengers who refused to adhere to mask guidelines.
The FAA said it has received about 1,300 cases of recalcitrant passengers from airlines since February and has identified about 260 violations to date.
The agency recommended a $ 32,750 fine for a JetBlue Airways Passenger on a February 7 flight to New York who was returning to the Dominican Republic after a passenger allegedly failed to wear a face mask, tossed food, yelled at the crew and slapped a flight attendant’s arm.
A $ 16,500 fine was also requested for a traveler on Jan. 26 Southwest Airlines The flight from Chicago to Sacramento, California, which the FAA allegedly refused to cover with its nose and mouth, was asked to leave and allegedly hit a flight attendant with his bags.
Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, which represents approximately 50,000 flight attendants on more than a dozen airlines, continues to advocate passengers wearing masks while on board masks.
“Aviation safety rules are harmonized around the world and we must have aviation safety credibility if the US aviation industry is to regain access to the rest of the world and fully recover,” she said in a statement.