Alexandria, VA – On May 14, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) announced that all Metro riders are required to wear face coverings on trains and buses. The development follows a recommendation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Masks must also be worn in all Metro facilities, including rail stations and bus terminals. Passengers who use WMATA’s paratransit system, MetroAccess, are expected to follow the requirement as well.
WMATA has encouraged the use of face coverings since the beginning of April, and the majority of riders have complied. But the new requirement is viewed as a necessary step in Metro’s recovery plan.
“Every person who wears a face covering on Metro is helping to keep others safe, and this is especially important for Metro’s frontline employees,” said Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld. “In the age of COVID-19, we all share a responsibility for frontline worker safety, and that’s what this is all about,”
Riders are reminded that at this time, Metro should be used only for essential travel. WMATA asks that people stay home as much as possible, echoing CDC guidance and various executive orders.