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CDC says two more weeks of masking on transit, at least

A passenger is seen on board the first Golden Gate transit bus to travel along the new Bus Rapid Transit corridor on Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco on Friday, April 1, 2022. | Nick Otto | Source: Nick Otto for The Standard

Don’t leave your mask at home quite yet: Face coverings will still be required on buses, trains and planes for at least two more weeks. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday an extension of the transit mask mandate until at least May 3. 

The extension comes alongside an uptick in local Covid-19 cases due to the BA.2 Omicron subvariant that’s more infectious than previous strains. 

Since it’s a Transportation Security Administration rule, the mandate won’t just apply to local transit—San Franciscans will have to mask up on public transportation throughout the country, in airports and on local and international flights. 

Meanwhile, mask mandates are mostly moot across the rest of San Francisco, with local businesses dropping mask and vaccine check requirements earlier this year. Schools, too, are now allowing students to go mask-free in the classroom. The one other place masks are still required? City Hall, but only while public meetings are in progress. 

Officials from San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority said last month that the agency plans to lift its own mask mandate only when the TSA lifts the federal rules.