Updated 5:04 p.m.
Travelers in Sacramento are navigating a new set of COVID-19 regulations after a Florida judge struck down the federal rule mandating masks on public transportation on Monday.
Like airports throughout the country, the Sacramento International Airport is lifting its mask mandate. Numerous airlines — including American, Delta and Southwest — have made masks optional on flights.
"It's still a fluid situation as you can imagine, but as of today the signage and protective barriers and things are beginning to be removed," said Scott Johnston with the Sacramento County Department of Airports.
"We are encouraging people, if they are still uncomfortable with not wearing a mask, they're very much welcome to continue to wear a mask," Johnston said. "We also are asking people to check with their airlines to see what their requirements are."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control had recently extended a rule that required masks on planes, trains and other forms of public transportation, but the mandate was struck down Monday by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle. The ruling means the Transportation Security Administration will no longer enforce its 2021 security directive, which required mask use on public transportation.
SacRT also says it will no longer require face coverings on buses and light rail trains, but says it still highly recommends mask wearing while riding public transportation. Spokesperson Jessica Gonzalez said the agency is in the process of removing signs from vehicles.
Gonzalez said SacRT will continue to make masks available for passengers and clean and sanitize vehicles daily. They strongly recommend not riding transit while experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
Some public transportation agencies in the region have announced they will continue to enforce a mask mandate for now. Caltrain said in a tweet Tuesday morning that the agency's mask policy had not changed and that riders should still wear masks on trains, though it was reviewing the Florida decision and would provide updates soon.
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