What are the new rules on face coverings in England?

15 June 2020, 12:44 | Updated: 15 June 2020, 12:47

Face coverings are mandatory on public transport from today (June 15) (stock images)
Face coverings are mandatory on public transport from today (June 15) (stock images). Picture: Getty

From today (June 15), face masks or coverings will be mandatory on public transport in England.

The public have been told that they must wear face coverings on public transport to help slow the spread of coronavirus.

From today (June 15), people in England must wear coverings or risk being refused onboard or facing a £100 fine.

Read more: Woman demonstrates how you can make a face covering with just one sock

The rules will apply to people travelling on all public transport in England - such as buses, trains, trams and planes.

More than 3,000 extra staff - including police officers - will be deployed at stations to enforce this rule.

What is a face covering and would a scarf be acceptable on public transport?

Face coverings differ to medical-grade face masks, and can be as simple as bandanas or scarves.

Hundreds of thousands of free coverings will be given out to the public in the coming days, and you can also easily make your own using material you have at home.

Does everyone have to wear face masks on public transport? Who is exempt?

The rule does apply to most people, but some people - such as children under 11, people with certain health conditions, and disabled people - are exempt.

See the full list of people exempt from the rule here.

Everyone in England must wear a face covering if using public transport from today (stock image)
Everyone in England must wear a face covering if using public transport from today (stock image). Picture: Getty

What have the UK government said about face coverings?

Transport Minister Grant Shapps announced that earlier this months face coverings would be mandatory on public transport on June 15.

Speaking at the daily press conference on 4 June, he said: "Yes, it's a condition of travel, you cannot travel until you're wearing one.

"This will be a visual thing, we will have posters and more, and other powers will be involved too, maybe leading to fines."

He continued: "We don't get why people wouldn't want to do the right thing, we're desperate to get rid of coronavirus."

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