Will the mask mandate for flights be extended? Southwest Airlines CEO says airlines not pushing for it


Airplanes and airports are among the few remaining places where face masks are required, but they might not be after Sept. 13if the rule isn’t extended.

Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly, chairman of industry lobbying group Airlines for America (A4A), said Thursday that Southwest and the trade group are not recommending another extension of the federal transportation mask mandate.

The mandate, which airlines and their unions requested to help with passenger mask compliance and to protect the health of flight crews, was put in place by President Joe Biden in January. The mandate, which applies to trains, planes and airports, buses and transportation hubs, was initially due to expire in May but was extended through Sept. 13, with the blessing of airlines.

Reports abound of passengers refusing to wear masks and becoming aggressive with flight crews.

Kelly, answering reporter questions during Southwest’s quarterly earnings conference call, said airlines support following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance on masks, which says vaccinated individuals don’t need one but unvaccinated individuals should wear one.

New rules: CDC lifts indoor mask requirement for fully vaccinated people

Unless that advice changes, he said, “we wouldn’t advocate from Southwest’s perspective, or the A4A for that matter, extending the mandate.”

Kelly said he doesn’t know whether the mandate, enforced by the Transportation Security Administration, will be extended or lifted.

“That’s a political question, to a degree,” he said.

Kelly said the government is studying the matter, given the spreading delta variant, which has caused a spike in COVID-19 cases, but he is not aware of “any efforts underway” to extend the mask mandate.

COVID-19 and travel:The delta variant is spreading. Should travelers be concerned?

The CDC has had no comment on the status of the mandate beyond Sept. 13.

“We can’t comment on pending regulatory discussions as to the future of the order,” spokesperson Caitlin Shockey said via email.

Kelly is the first U.S. airline executive to publicly express what is in effect support for letting the mandate expire, though United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby said he expected it to be lifted in September.

“What they decide, we’ll enforce,” American Airlines CEO Doug Parker said earlier Thursday on the airline’s quarterly earnings conference call. “It’s not for us to opine.”

Last week, Delta CEO Ed Bastian told Wall Street analysts and investors he didn’t know the fate of the mandate.

He said there are as many “pros to taking the mask requirement off as there are to keeping it on at the present time.”

“I think it’s important that medical experts make those decisions, not airline professionals, as we’ve learned through the pandemic,” he said on the airline’s earnings call. “They’re the ones that have all the insight and the information and keeping people safe. I appreciate people not wanting to wear the mask. I don’t like wearing the mask when I’m on board either, but it’s something that we need to do to keep each other safe.”

Los Angeles County, the most populated county in the USA, will once again require people to wear masks indoors – regardless of vaccination status – after a surge in COVID-19 cases.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

KBC 13: Budding online influencer hilariously schools Amitabh Bachchan on social media; leaves everyone in splits | Watch

© Provided by Jagran English New Delhi | Jagran Entertainment Desk: Amitabh Bachchan’s Kaun Banega Crorepati 13 is much more than just a quiz game show. This has been proved time ... Read more »

Ikan Patin diproses jadi ikan masin

© Provided by Harian Metro PEMACING dari Kampung Olak Lempit, Samsuddin Wagiman menjadikan hasil tangkapan sungai sebagai ikan masin. FOTO Samadi Ahmad am@hmetro.com.my Sepang: Kebiasaannya produk ikan masin sinonim dengan ... Read more »

Tak sempat seludup 600kg daun ketum ke negara jiran

© Provided by Harian Metro 600kg daun ketum dalam 54 bungkusan plastik hitam bernilai RM108,000 dirampas APMM Zon Maritim Kuala Perlis di pantai Kurung Tengar, Kuala Perlis. FOTO Ihsan APMM ... Read more »

MAA: August vehicle sales jump 147% m-o-m, as showrooms allowed to operate

© Provided by The Edge KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): The Malaysian Automotive Association (MAA) said total industry volume (TIV) increased 147% month-on-month from 7,086 units in July, as showrooms in ... Read more »

Comfort Gloves 2Q profit down 32% q-o-q to RM148.82m, declares two sen dividend

© Provided by The Edge KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): Comfort Gloves Bhd’s net profit in the second quarter ended July 31, 2021 (2QFY22) fell 32.09% to RM148.82 million from its ... Read more »

KNM — a new chapter or asset stripping?

© Provided by The Edge SINCE last month, KNM Group Bhd’s share price has been climbing steadily, amid speculation that it is in the midst of unlocking asset values, including ... Read more »

Genting's entry sparks interest in PUC's digital banking bid

© Provided by The Edge LAST Tuesday, ACE Market-listed PUC Bhd announced that GPVF Sdn Bhd, an indirect subsidiary of Genting Plantations Bhd — the plantation arm of the Genting ... Read more »

Perak Transit issues RM100m Islamic notes to fund transportation terminal development

© Provided by The Edge KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): Perak Transit Bhd has issued a second tranche of RM100 million Islamic medium term notes (IMTN) to finance its working capital ... Read more »

Dubai Airports sees doubling of visitors in 2022 as curbs ease

© Motivate Publishing Dubai-airport Dubai’s airports chief says the number of international visitors may more than double next year as the easing of Covid-19 restrictions boosts travel through one of ... Read more »

MR DIY slashes prices on essential items in sale campaign

© Provided by The Edge KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): Home improvement retailer MR DIY has embarked on its “Poket Selamat 7” campaign to ensure that the public have affordable and ... Read more »

Eurospan jumps 16% to all-time high

© Provided by The Edge KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 21): Shares in Eurospan Holdings Bhd surged 16.05% or 26 sen to an all-time high of RM1.62 this morning, extending yesterday’s gains ... Read more »

Egypt's first post-Mubarak ruler, Hussein Tantawi, dies aged 85

© Provided by Al Jazeera Like all Egyptian leaders from the overthrow of the monarchy in 1952 to the 2012 election of Morsi, Tantawi came from military ranks [File: Cai ... Read more »

IPO Update: Paras Defence IPO subscribed 9.55 times on Day 1

© Provided by Business Today IPO Update: Paras Defence IPO subscribed 9.55 times on Day 1 The initial public offer (IPO) of Paras Defence and Space Technologies has been subscribed ... Read more »

Armaan Malik on winning SIIMA award: 'Butta Bomma' one of my most memorable songs

© IANS ARMAAN MALIK. Mumbai, Sep 21 (IANS) Celebrated playback singer Armaan Malik wins won Best Playback Singer at the South Indian International Movie Awards (SIIMA) for the Telugu song ... Read more »

Shashi Tharoor attends Jamia Hamdard Founder's Day 2021

Dr. Shashi Tharoor Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha, and the former Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations was the chief guest for the event who gave a detailed lecture and enlightened ... Read more »

Wipro Careers: IT Job Vacancies in India, Check Position, Salary, Eligibility, How to Apply

© Provided by News18 Wipro Careers: IT Job Vacancies in India, Check Position, Salary, Eligibility, How to Apply There is a piece of good news for all those who are ... Read more »

WhatsApp Update: WhatsApp Messenger Rooms feature has been removed

© Provided by Zee News Facebook-owned WhatsApp has been working on several features lately, which range from group icon editor to transferring chats from Android devices to iPhone. Now the ... Read more »

After intimate MMS leak, Bhojpuri actress Trisha Kar Madhu shares heartfelt message in new video - Watch

© Provided by Zee News New Delhi: Popular Bhojpuri actress Trisha Kar Madhu hogged the limelight for her intimate MMS leak a couple of days back. The private video with ... Read more »

EVRE, Park+ to set up 10,000 EV charging stations in India by 2023

Park+ EVRE, an EV charging infrastructure player and Park+, a parking solutions brand, announced a partnership to establish 10,000 EV charging stations across India over the next two years. The ... Read more »

Krithi Shetty Birthday: Nani posts video from Shyam Singha Roy; Ram Pothineni, Sudheer Babu & more send wishes

Post the success of debut movie Uppena, Krithi Shetty became a popular name in the south industry as she has been offered a bunch of movies. the young actress almost ... Read more »

For Funding Terror? Imported as Talcum Powder, Afghan Drugs Worth Rs 21,000 cr Busted at Gujarat Port

© Provided by News18 For Funding Terror? Imported as Talcum Powder, Afghan Drugs Worth Rs 21,000 cr Busted at Gujarat Port The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) seized two containers ... Read more »

Prasad Sashte teams up with Pritam for 'Brahmastra'

© IANS Prasad Sashte teams up with Pritam’ for ‘Brahmastra’. Mumbai, Sep 21 (IANS) Bollywood music producer Prasad Sashte, who has worked on films like ‘Chhichhore’, ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’, ‘Rustom’, ‘Kalank’, ... Read more »

‘Re-wearing is an essential part of sustainability': Designer Harleen Kaur

© Provided by The Indian Express From handmade Italian jacquards and fine Japanese satin, to tulle that is hand-beaded in India, each piece is as culturally diverse as the society ... Read more »

CIA agent reports Havana syndrome during India trip. What do Cubans say?

© Provided by Hindustan Times Havana syndrome is a mysterious set of ailments that include migraines, nausea, memory lapses and dizziness.  (Reuters File Photo) A CIA officer, who was travelling ... Read more »

84% consumers feel safe returning to office: Deloitte

© Provided by Business Today 84% consumers feel safe returning to office: Deloitte  As many as 84 per cent consumers feel safe to return to their workplace and 60 per ... Read more »

Shoppers face empty shelves in 10 days as ministers battle to solve CO2 shortage

Taxpayers’ cash is set to handed to an American firm to ease the carbon dioxide (CO2) supply crisis as ministers were warned shoppers will see shortages in 10 days. Industry ... Read more »

#BucketList: 8 royal palaces around the world turned into spectacular hotels

© Provided by Lifestyle Asia Once in a while, we want to be pampered with the luxury and flamboyance that royals experience on a daily basis. However, one doesn’t need ... Read more »

Head To These Underrated Destinations In The USA As The Country Opens For Tourists Again

© Provided by iDiva After being closed to tourists for a long time, the United States is finally opening up its borders this November. The country had imposed a blanket ... Read more »

FTSE 100 rallies to cancel out yesterday's losses

© Provided by City AM London’s FTSE 100 rallied during opening exchanges this morning to cancel out sharp losses on the blue-chip index yesterday, led by fears over the fallout ... Read more »

Teenager charged after stabbing of another boy at NSW beach party

A teenager has been charged over the alleged stabbing of another boy at a beach party on the NSW North coast. About 100 people were at a gathering on Murrays ... Read more »

David Beckham's strict instructions to Inter Miami boss Phil Neville for son Romeo

David Beckham has told Inter Miami boss Phil Neville to be particularly hard on his son Romeo, who recently made his professional debut. The 19-year-old, who is the second eldest ... Read more »

Surge in US flight bookings as Virgin Atlantic reports 91% boost

The relaxation of travel restrictions between the UK and the US has resulted in a surge in bookings for transatlantic flights, with Virgin Atlantic reporting a 91 per cent increase. ... Read more »

While Melbourne riots Sydney tradies get green light to return to work

© Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo The vast majority of Sydney’s frustrated construction workers are set to get the green light to return to work from next Monday. NSW ... Read more »

Russia responsible for Litvinenko assassination, European court rules

Russia was responsible for the 2006 assassination of Alexander Litvinenko in London, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled. © Rex Features Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned in a London ... Read more »

Tunisian president vows new electoral code, transition team

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved Tunisia Protests – Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved Tunisia’s president has announced plans to draft a new electoral ... Read more »

Anya Taylor-Joy wore roughly $800,000 in jewellery to the Emmys

© Instagram ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ star wore roughly $800,000 in jewels for her showstopping arrival upon the Emmy’s red carpet. No one does glamour quite like Anya Taylor-Joy. So it ... Read more »

Alex Jones looked stunning in turquoise florals at the Chelsea Flower Show

© GORC – Getty Images Alex Jones looked stunning in blue florals to open The One Show’s Chelsea Flower Show garden, before presenting a one-off episode. Alex Jones looked stunning ... Read more »

B&Q owner Kingfisher sees profits surge and hikes dividend as Britons splash out on new kitchens and bathrooms

© Provided by This Is Money MailOnline logo B&Q owner Kingfisher saw its profits jump over 60 per cent in its first half, as the do-it-yourself boom triggered by the ... Read more »

Aged care campaigner, community activist and former ACOSS president Merle Mitchell has died

© Provided by ABC NEWS Merle Mitchell worked tirelessly to improve the community around her – more recently becoming a voice for aged care residents during the Royal Commission. (Supplied: ... Read more »

Central Queensland train crash that claimed life of Chris O'Brien detailed in ATSB report

© Provided by ABC NEWS The Forensic Crash Unit is investigating. (Supplied: RACQ Capricorn Helicopter Rescue Service) Investigators have revealed that a fatal central Queensland train crash happened when a train being ... Read more »