Primary Menu
PHOENIX, ARIZONA - DECEMBER 18: People walk through Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix where new COVID-19 cases are down but health experts warn cases may rise with the introduction of the omicron strain on December 18, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, since mid-December 2020 over 14,000 people have died of COVID-19 in Arizona. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has signed an executive order banning local governments from imposing the vaccine requirements. Arizona does not yet have a mask mandate and mask use is sporadic. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — A federal judge in Florida struck down a national mask mandate on airplanes and mass transit Monday, and airlines and airports swiftly began repealing their face covering requirements. The judge’s decision freed airlines, airports and mass transit systems to make their own decisions about mask requirements, resulting in a mix of responses to the ruling. The major airlines switched to a mask optional policy, eliciting cheers from passengers when the changes were announced over loudspeakers. The Transportation Security Administration said Monday night that it would it will no longer enforce the mask requirement, and airports in Houston and Dallas almost immediately did away with their mandates after the TSA announcement.