Economy

USA airlines may ban passengers who refuse to wear face masks

USA airlines may ban passengers who refuse to wear face masks”

There were exceptions for those with medical limitations, and passengers could also take them off to eat or drink.

Other airlines are expected to lay out specific policies as well as enforcement procedures for crew membersto follow in the coming days, the source said. Despite the fact that the numbers of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from the coronavirus are continuing to set new daily records in the USA, though, airlines have prepared themselves to encounter fliers who for whatever reason refuse to wear a face mask.

To improve preflight communications, each carrier will clearly explain their respective face-covering policy to customers; passengers may also have to acknowledge that airline's specific rules while checking in. "Today's announcement is an unmistakable signal that we're prepared to take serious steps, if necessary, to protect our customers and crew", Enqvist added.

Six other major U.S. airlines - including American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines - pledged to roll out new policies requiring masks, also enforced with a penalty as severe as a ban on flying with that particular airline.

Prior to each flight, Alaska, American, United, Delta, Southwest, Hawaiian and JetBlue Airways will communicate to passengers their policy on individual face coverings, which must cover a passenger's nose and mouth. If customers still won't comply the crew will file a report of the incident which will be reviewed by United and a determination will be made. In a recent press release, the airline explained that starting June 18, all passengers who do not adhere to its policy while onboard their aircraft will be placed on a restricted travel list.

Passengers wearing face masks onboard a United flight.

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Each carrier will determine the appropriate consequences for passengers who are found to be in noncompliance of the airline's face covering policy up to and including suspension of flying privileges on that airline.

Airlines have been scrambling to assure customers that it is safe to fly again by touting more rigorous cleaning standards, air filtering systems and requiring employees to wear masks and gloves.

Some passengers are exempt from the face covering requirement, such as young children and those with a disability or medical reason for why they can not wear a face covering. A security team would investigate and hand down a decision on future flights. The guidelines also repeated earlier advice about wearing face coverings, especially if it's hard to keep at least 6 feet away from other people.

"The flight attendant's role is informational, not enforcement, with respect to the face covering policy", the memo said.

The measures are expected to remain in place throughout the coronavirus crisis.

Airlines have struggled with how to vigorously enforce face-covering requirements since they went into effect a little over a month ago.



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