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Connecticut drops face mask mandate on buses, 2 rail lines

 A fuel cell bus at CT Transit’s facility in Hartford.
A fuel cell bus at CT Transit’s facility in Hartford.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation announced Wednesday it is making face masks optional on buses and commuter rail lines after the federal Transportation Security Administration this week ended enforcement of a mask mandate.

The nation’s federal mask mandate on public transit ended after a federal judge in Florida ruled Monday struck down the requirement on airplanes and mass transit. But the Justice Department, at the request of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, filed an appeal on Wednesday, seeking to overturn the judge's order.

“For the last two years, our transit operators have provided masks to the public and enforced mask mandates on public transit," Transportation Deputy Commissioner Garrett Eucalitto said in a written statement. “Now that the federal mask mandate for public transit is no longer in effect, masking will no longer be enforced, but is still strongly encouraged per current CDC guidelines.”

Masks will now be optional on CTtransit buses, the Hartford Line and Shore Line East commuter rail services as well as all transportation facilities in Connecticut. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York, however, is still requiring masks on Metro North's New Haven Line.

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