WINNIPEG -- It will soon become mandatory to wear a face mask or covering at the Brandon Municipal Airport.

The City of Brandon announced Wednesday that the new measure will take effect on July 10, and impact everyone present in the terminal building.

“This is part of the City of Brandon’s ongoing COVID-19 pandemic response and is necessary because the growing number of people attending to the terminal for WestJet’s summer flight schedule has made it much more difficult for people to properly physically distance while in the terminal building,” the city wrote.

The city said the airport will not provide face masks or face coverings.

It notes there are several exceptions to the mandatory mask rule. They are:

  • When you could be endangered by wearing a mask;
  • When security, airline staff or airport staff authorizes the removal of a face mask in cases of special needs or unforeseen circumstances;
  • When you are eating, drinking or taking oral medications;
  • An infant of two years or less is not required to wear a face mask of face covering;
  • When you have difficulty breathing (not related to COVID-19); and
  • A person who is unconscious, or a person who is unable to remove their face mask without assistance.

In April, Transport Canada made it mandatory for all air travellers to wear a face mask or a face covering while going through security screening and flying on the aircraft.

Passengers at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport are currently required to wear a mask or covering while going through security, boarding an airplane and while flying.

“We’re aware that other airports have moved to that through the whole passenger experience at the airport, that’s something we’re keeping a close eye on,” said Tyler MacAfee, vice-president of communications and government relations with the Winnipeg Airports Authority. “Right now, our traffic volumes allow us to maintain physical distancing in the terminal, so we’re not at that stage right now where we feel we have to make it mandatory, but it’s certainly something that we’re keeping a close check on, and we’re reviewing almost daily to see when we need to move to that stage.”