HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – After the mask mandate for public transit was overturned, public transit riders in Hattiesburg and other communities have the choice of whether or not to wear face masks.

Drivers said they’ve received mixed opinions from riders about the changes.

“I do have some that are excited that the mask mandate has been lifted, and I do have the other half that are going to continue to wear their masks,” said Bridgette Lee, a Hub City transit driver.

Early on when the mandate was first put in place, masks have been available to any customer who needs one. Some transit users said they’re glad to see the restrictions go.

“It makes me feel better that we don’t have to wear a mask every time we get on the bus, because sometimes I forget my mask. I think anything that isn’t mandatory is good,” said David Miller, a transit rider. 

Coronavirus cases in Forrest County have been minor, but other states have reported an uptick in the new variant BA.2.

The Justice Department will file an appeal seeking to overturn a judge’s order that voided the federal mask mandate on planes and trains and in travel hubs.