Masks still required at ROC airport under state mandate

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ROCHESTER N.Y. (WHEC) — The Frederick Douglass—Greater Rochester International Airport will still require masks in its facilities, under the state’s mask mandate for public transportation.

The airport made the announcement on Wednesday after Gov. Kathy Hochul gave a presentation at SUNY Upstate, where she said the state will still mandate masks for public transportation and other areas.

“Let’s just be smart about it,” Hochul said. “You know, I think people do feel better when they’re in public transit, sitting really close to somebody to know that people are protecting themselves and again this is very much in the short term.”

Travelers will be required to wear a mask until they board a plane. Most airlines allow travelers to choose whether they wish to wear a mask because a federal judge’s ruling on Monday struck down a nationwide mask mandate for passengers and employees on planes.

The announcement took some travelers by surprise.

“It’s unfortunate, it really is,” Jaminett Ortiz said. “I was hoping I would have, you know, had their ducks in a row, if you will.”

“Nobody said anything to me,” Gabriel Sosa said. “I do have my vaccination card, so I’m trusting that the vaccine will work.”

“They say you don’t need a mask, but now you just told me I need the mask. It’s confusing,” Dan Amos said.

Some said while the confusion can be frustrating, they will comply if asked and always keep a mask on hand just in case.

“It is what it is now with the COVID,” Ortiz said. “You know, things change every day, every hour, it seems like so it’s not a surprise to me that they’ve backtracked it.”

“It kind of makes a little sense because every time we relax, the standards in all cases go up dramatically. So I’m ready, like anybody else is to go back to life as it was,” Amos said. “But, you know, we need to kind of go step by step, I think.”