Federal Authorities Begin Enforcing Mandatory Transportation Mask Laws

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) new order requiring Americans to wear masks while in trains, buses, planes, and other transportation settings can now be enforced by criminal penalty. 

The order is being enforced by state and local law enforcement, federal authorities, and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents. The CDC stated the order will be enforced “To the extent permitted by law…federal agencies are required to implement additional measures enforcing the provisions of this Order.”

The “CDC reserves the right to enforce through criminal penalties,” though the agency says it does not intend “to rely primarily on these criminal penalties.”

The CDC order also designates that certain masks are not permitted and will result in being in violation of the new directive. For example bandanas, scarfs, and balaclavas, or anything made from knitted fabrics, plastic, vinyl, or leather will be prohibited.

Furthermore, this order leaves a lot of leeway for authorities to decide what is safe and what is not, which could lead to targeted enforcement.