On April 18, U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizellea Donald Trump appointeestruck down the Biden Administration's COVID mask mandate for airplanes and other public transport methods.
A Biden Administration official said the mask order is no longer in effect while the ruling is reviewed.
Mizelle said the mandate was unlawful because it exceeded the statutory authority of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and because its implementation violated administrative law, CNN reported.
Just last week, the CDC extended this mask mandate through May 3.
The developments added fresh confusion to masking policies nationwide, with several airlines and travel authorities quickly announcing April 18 that masks are now optional. A separate CNN article noted that Delta Air Lines, American Airlines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Alaska Airlines and JetBlue are among the airlines that will not enforce mask-wearing
Uber also said it's also going to make masks optional, NBC Connecticut reported. Riders are also no longer mandated to sit in the back seats, Uber added, though it advised only using the front passenger seat if required by the size of the group riding. As of April 19, Lyft's website still stated that masks were required.
In Chicago, those taking the CTA or Metra will still be required to wear masks, ABC 7 Chicago noted. The South Shore Line and Amtrak have said that mask-wearing will now be optional.