Is It Legal to Drive With a Mask On?
With everything moving and changing so quickly as a result of COVID-19, there are many questions circulating on what is and what isn’t acceptable when it comes to wearing a mask. One of the biggest questions people have been asking is: Is it legal to drive with a mask on? If you are referring to a mask that only covers your mouth and nose, such as the medical masks or cloth masks that are currently on the market, then yes, it is legal to wear a mask while you are driving. Before you start wearing a mask while you drive, it’s important to understand the laws revolving around masks, what masks are safe to drive in and some safety precautions you should take while wearing a mask.
Federal and State Regulations on Masks
Where the confusion may come into play are some current laws that are in place that do mention mask restrictions.
There are no Federal Laws currently that mandate the wearing of masks or that limit where you can wear a medical mask. The only Federal Law in place is one that prohibits anyone from wearing a mask that covers their entire face when boarding a plane or entering a bank.
States and cities get to individually set their laws when it comes to wearing a mask. These laws involve mandating where a mask that covers both your mouth and nose must be worn. They aren’t really focused on restricting you from wearing one unless it’s a harmful or dangerous situation. Where you will see the restrictions on wearing a mask is the type of mask you are wearing, not necessarily when you are wearing it. Now if you are wearing the mask over your eyes while you are driving, then yes that poses an issue. If you are wearing the mask correctly, then yes, it is legal to wear the mask while you are driving.
It’s important to note that the mask mandates change depending on the city and state you are in. So, if you plan to do some travelling anytime soon, it would be a good idea to look up the mandates for the cities you will be traveling through and to. It’s also a good idea to keep a few masks in your car just in case. Another important thing to note is that a city might not have a mask mandate in place, but some corporate businesses, such as Walmart, are requiring masks to be worn in their stores nation-wide.
While we have addressed that it is legal to wear a mask while driving, it is important that you do it safely. If you have health issues or are in an environment that makes breathing more difficult, it is not recommended that you wear a mask while driving. Some drivers have experienced dizziness and shortness of breath that has resulted in them passing out at the wheel. If you choose to wear a mask while driving, make sure that it only covers your mouth and nose and be aware of fogging glasses if you wear them. Masks that cover your entire face, such as a Halloween mask or ski mask can be harmful and are even restricted when worn in an improper setting. Be aware of your environment too. If it’s a hot day, make sure to have the AC cranking, or if it’s cool out, rolling the windows down for some fresh air can be very beneficial. If you do feel lightheaded or unwell while driving with your mask on, pull over in a safe spot as soon as possible.
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