By David Shepardson WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Joe Biden’s administration confirmed late on Tuesday it plans to extend requirements for travelers to wear masks on airplanes, trains, and buses and at airports and train stations through Jan. 18 to address ongoing COVID-19 risks.
A Transportation Security Administration (TSA) spokesperson confirmed the extension, first reported by Reuters. “The purpose of TSA’s mask directive is to minimize the spread of COVID-19 on public transportation,” the spokesperson said
Major U.S. airlines were informed of the planned extension on a call with TSA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday, four people briefed on the matter said.
The current TSA transportation mask order runs through Sept 13.
The extension reflects the impact of the highly transmissible Delta variant and is an acknowledgment that transit remains potentially risky, especially for unvaccinated people.