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CDC mandates masks on public transportation

The order applies to planes, trains, buses, boats, terminals, train stations, seaports and Uber and Lyft rides.
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Passengers at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago on June 13, 2020.Patrick T. Fallon / Bloomberg via Getty Images file

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday night that mask-wearing will be required on all on all public transportation beginning Monday night.

The mandate issued by CDC division director Martin S. Cetron was made after President Joe Biden issued an executive order Jan. 21 that called for "immediate action" on mask-wearing for "all forms of public transportation."

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It applies to all public commercial transportation — planes, trains, boats and buses — and to transportation hubs, such as air terminals, train stations, subway stations, seaports and bus depots.

It also covers ferries, subways, taxis and ride-hail vehicles, the CDC said. Operators and transportation workers must wear masks, too.

The order does not apply to children 2 or younger, commercial trucks and military transportation. Travelers don't have to wear masks while briefly eating or drinking, the CDC said.

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The CDC said it would rely most only "widespread voluntary compliance," according to the order. It goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. Monday.

Biden used his first days in office to also mandate mask-wearing and social distancing on all federal properties. While stopping short of mandatory mask-wearing in all public situations, he has encouraged mask-wearing "across America."