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Health chief says masks are coming off too soon

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – After a federal judge struck down the mask mandate for airlines and transit services, many Fort Wayne services followed suit. The Allen County Health Commissioner doesn’t necessarily agree with that decision.

On Monday evening, the Transportation Security Administration said it would no longer enforce the mask requirement. The airlines acted quickly by ending the mandate. Uber and Citilink also terminated the mandate.

Citilink has been preparing for this announcement for a long time. John Metzinger, CEO of Citilink says, “It’s been interesting in our community, especially since you can go almost anywhere, maybe except health care facilities, without wearing a mask. In public transport, our passengers would get on the bus after work for example, and would not have a mask with them. So we didn’t make masks available, but it just seemed unusual that masks were only required on Citilink. I think that’s a good thing for our riders because now they can just get back on board like they did before the pandemic and then go where they need to go.

Fort Wayne International Airport announced on Twitter that passengers, visitors and employees are no longer required to wear a mask at the airport.

Despite many transportation services ending the term, Allen County Health Commissioner Dr. Matthew Sutter said it might not have been the best decision.

“I think it’s premature, we continue to see BA-2 surges in the northeast around some of the larger urban centers. Certainly public transit is one way COVID-19 spreads quite easily,” says Sutter. He says masks limit the spread if the person wearing a mask is infected and continues to urge people to get vaccinated.

Many northern Indiana travelers fly into O’Hare International Airport. The airport announced on Twitter Tuesday that he still requires masks at this time.