Murphy Expanding Face Covering Requirements, Capping Transit Ridership

The moves come as New Jersey reports hundreds more coronavirus deaths and thousands of new infections

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New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Saturday announced that he was mandating all customers wear face coverings when walking into restaurants or bars to pick up takeout orders. 

In addition, Murphy said he was signing an executive order directing New Jersey Transit and all private carriers to cut capacity on trains, buses, light rail and paratransit vehicles by 50%. He was also mandating that riders use face masks unless prevented from doing so due to a medical condition.

“A face covering does not mean a medical-grade mask. We need to keep those for our front-line public health and safety responders, and they remain, I might add, in short supply,” Murphy said.

When it comes to restaurants and bars, customers will need to wear a face covering if walking into establishments to pick up their order. However, they will not have to wear a covering in the case of curbside pickup or if an employee is delivering the order.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced an expanded face mask policy, as well as a cap on ridership on both NJ Transit and private carriers amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Restaurants and bars also will have to provide face coverings and gloves to food service personnel, Murphy said.

Similarly, NJ Transit and private carriers are required to provide face coverings and gloves for drivers.

The orders go into effect Monday at 8 p.m., Murphy said.

The moves came as New Jersey reported 251 new deaths caused by the novel coronavirus – taking fatalities to more than 2,100 – and as the number of infections in the state reached more than 58,000. 

“I know for some of you, you may view this as just another inconvenience … But you know what would be really inconvenient, is if you ended up in the hospital with COVID-19, or you inadvertently infected a family member, maybe of an older generation, with the virus unwittingly,” Murphy said.

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