MIAMI (WSVN) - Commuters are required to mask up when using public transportation, now that it’s federal law.

The mask rule was already in place in South Florida during the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, but those who are waiting for a bus, train or Metromover now have to comply with the federal mask mandate when they use public transportation, which is now in effect across the country.

“We’re required to require all our passengers to wear facial coverings,” said Alice Bravo, Miami-Dade County director of public transportation.

New federal rules require passengers on all modes of transportation to mask up to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“I think it’s appropriate. You get on the bus, people start sneezing,” said one passenger.

The mandate doesn’t change much in South Florida, where mask orders have been enforced since the beginning of the pandemic.

“Now it’s a federal mandate, so at least we know it’s consistent. Wherever you go, you’re gonna encounter the same rule,” Bravo said.

MetroRail riders said seeing other passengers wearing facial coverings makes them feel safer, especially for those who use the service daily.

“You have to wear it, or the security says something right away. They’re doing a good job,” said transit rider Andres Capelan.

Miami International Airport and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport have already been enforcing mask rules. The new order out of President Biden’s administration only strengthens their ability to enforce it.

For passengers who don’t comply…

“For train stations, they’re simply not allowed into the MetroRail stations, and in other situations, yes, they’re asked to leave,” Bravo said.

If you show up at bus stop without a mask, you will not be allowed on board the bus.

The mask rules will be in effect for as long as the federal government and local leaders decide to enforce it.

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