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Washington County continues to value safety in providing transportation to the community. Many of our riders are elderly and/or disabled, and at high-risk of complications from COVID-19.  People may not be able to distance themselves by the recommended at least 6 feet from other people seated nearby. Washington County Transit has been requiring face coverings for all riders and drivers for several months to protect our most vulnerable riders. The new security directive/CDC order reinforces the efforts of the County. 

The Transit Security Administration (TSA) has issued a security a directive, echoed by an order by the CDC, requires face masks to be worn by all travelers while on public transportation (which includes all passengers and operators). People must wear masks that completely cover both the mouth and nose while awaiting, boarding, disembarking, or traveling on all buses, taxis, and ride-shares in the United States. This includes while waiting for transit at a park-and-ride lot or other bus stop. 

Transit operators are now required to take the following actions:

  • Board/allow entry only people who wear masks;
  • instruct people that wearing a mask on the vehicle/premises is a requirement of federal law and that not complying with the requirement is a violation of federal law;
  • monitor the vehicle/premises for any person who is not wearing a mask and seek compliance from such a person;
  • at the earliest safe opportunity, disembark/remove from premises any person who refuses to comply; and
  • notify people of the requirement to make sure they aware of and comply with the requirement to wear a mask. Examples of such notifications are messaging in apps, on websites or through email; posters in multiple languages with illustrations; and printing the information on tickets.

People are not required to wear a mask under the following circumstances:

  • while eating, drinking, or taking medication for brief periods of time;
  • while communicating, for brief periods of time, with a person who is hearing impaired when the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication;
  • if unconscious (for reasons other than sleeping), incapacitated, unable to be awakened, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance; or
  • when necessary to temporarily remove the mask to verify one’s identity such as during Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening or when asked to do so by the ticket or gate agent or any law enforcement official.

The following categories of people are exempt from the requirement to wear a mask:

  • A child under the age of 2 years;
  • A person with a disability who cannot wear a mask, or cannot safely wear a mask, for reasons related to the disability;
  • A person for whom wearing a mask would create a risk to workplace health, safety, or job duty as determined by the relevant workplace safety guidelines or federal regulations.

Thank you for helping to keep Washington County Transit safe for all riders. More information about the mask requirement can be found at the CDC website

Posted by Joy.Neilson  On Feb 24, 2021 at 2:39 PM
  
 
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