Face coverings are compulsory on public transport from Tuesday Nov 30.
The Government has confirmed some new, precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the new Covid-19 Omicron variant in the UK.
As well as on public transport, face coverings will be compulsory in shops and other settings such as banks, post offices and hairdressers.
Nexus, the public body which operates the Tyne and Wear Metro, said customers needed to follow the legal requirement, unless they are medically exempt. Face coverings remain a condition of carriage on Metro.
Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said: “We have always encouraged people to wear face coverings when using public transport unless they are exempt. The Government has now said that from tomorrow face coverings will be mandatory and we hope and expect that our customers will follow this clear instruction.
“We made wearing face coverings part of Metro’s Conditions of Carriage in July, unless you are exempt, and now that has once again been mandated as a legal requirement, following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Saturday.
“Face coverings are a simple step that everyone can take to protect you and your family’s health and that of other people in the community. Our frontline teams will continue to remind and encourage customers to wear face coverings when using public transport, and to explain the benefits of doing so.”
The new rules apply to travel on all modes of public transport - on board all trains, buses and ferries and at stations and interchanges.
Enhanced cleaning regimes have been maintained on the Metro system throughout the pandemic. The regime includes the daily use of a hospital-grade cleaning fluid on high touch surfaces, including handrails, poles, buttons and ticket machines, and an anti-bacterial disinfectant spray is applied in Metro carriages. The spray kills germs and keeps critical surfaces and touchpoints cleaner for longer.
Customers are also encouraged to keep windows on Metro trains open, to aid ventilation in the carriages.