In future, all passengers aged 12 or more must wear face masks or shields on all means of public transport, on ferries and in taxis. Customer-facing staff must also wear face masks or shields.
The Government’s decision is based on the recommendation of the Danish Health Authority to make face masks mandatory on all forms of public transport across the country at all hours. The mandatory requirement applies across the nation and is in line with the rules currently applicable to all forms of public transport in Aarhus and the surrounding municipalities.
"I am very satisfied with the new recommendation of the Danish Health Authority because it will make life easier and safer for all public transport passengers. It is no longer up to each individual to assess whether the congestion is at a level requiring the use of a face mask. That is just how it is. We know from our neighbouring countries that even though a face mask may seem a little odd at first, you quickly get used to it," says Benny Engelbrecht, Minister for Transport.
The rules will come into force on 22 August 2020, and a detailed executive order will be issued by then. However, people on the move are urged to wear face masks or shields even now. When the mandatory requirement takes effect, it will be up to the transport operators to enforce the rules like when they inspect tickets. Passengers not wearing face masks or shields will be refused admission to or turned away from the transport vehicle.
"In recent months, Danes have followed the advice of the authorities and I am confident that they will also do so now. We have a good dialogue with the transport operators and the trade unions and I expect everyone to do their utmost to make the transition to the new daily routines as smooth as possible. There will be a lot of questions and we will answer them as they arise. However, it will be very simple for most people to wear a face mask or shield and thereby make it safe to use public transport," says Mr Engelbrecht.
"The higher activity and congestion have increased the reproduction number in several towns. Although the increase in the number of infected people is confined to certain municipalities, the number of municipalities seeing the virus spreading has increased. That is why we take the precaution to make face masks mandatory on public transport. The tools applied vary depending on the nature of the outbreak. The Government and the authorities take the steps necessary to break the chains of infection, not least to protect extremely vulnerable Danes who are at higher risk of falling seriously ill due to COVID-19," says Magnus Heunicke, Minister for Health and Senior Citizens.
The requirement to wear a face mask or shield applies to all passengers aged 12 or more. Some people will be exempt from the requirement to wear a face mask or shield for health reasons. The requirement applies to all passengers using busses, trains, the Metro, light rail, Flextrafik and Flextur (demand responsive transport), at bus, train and Metro stations and at light rail stops and stations. The requirement also applies to passengers of private traffic operators, including long\u0002distance busses, ferries and private taxis.
The requirement to wear a mask or shield also applies to staff, including bus drivers and ticket attendants, whenever they are in contact with passengers/customers.
The staff are not required to wear personal protective equipment in compartments to which passengers/customers do not have access, such as a train driver’s cab.
Transport operators will introduce rules for passengers to wear face masks in transport vehicles, at stations etc. Passengers who do not comply with the requirement will be turned away. If a passenger refuses to leave a transport vehicle, the police will handle the matter