Masks required at Hartsfield-Jackson under Atlanta mayor’s executive order

Masks are now required at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport under an executive order signed by Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms on Wednesday.

The order calls for people in the city of Atlanta and Hartsfield-Jackson to wear a mask or face covering over their nose and mouth when in a building or space open to the public where it's not feasible to maintain social distancing.

The requirement does not apply to children under 10 years old, or anyone with a medical condition or disability that prevents the wearing of a mask.

People also do not have to wear masks while eating or drinking or while in a car. People also can temporarily remove masks for security screening.

City-run Hartsfield-Jackson provides masks to those who need them at the airport, as does Delta Air Lines, which like other airlines requires passengers to wear masks.

“We will continue to take active measures to help slow the spread of COVID-19 infections in Atlanta,” Bottoms said in a written statement. “Public health experts overwhelmingly agree that wearing a face covering helps slow the spread of this sometimes deadly virus.”

Bottoms issued the mandate in spite of an executive order from Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp that says local municipalities cannot create stronger provisions than those that are in his order, which encourages masks but does not require them.

Bottoms previously said the city couldn't force people to wear masks because of the Kemp executive order.

But on Wednesday she told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that she feels secure establishing a mask requirement after Kemp took no action against Savannah and other Georgia cities that did so.