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A passenger was removed from a flight for refusing to wear a face mask

June 17, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Tension over wearing face masks led to a passenger's removal from an American Airlines flight Wednesday as airlines enforce stricter safety measures.

(CNN) — Tension over wearing face masks led to a passenger's removal from an American Airlines flight Wednesday as airlines enforce stricter safety measures.

Passenger Brandon Straka was asked to get off a flight from New York to Dallas after he refused to wear a face covering as required by American Airlines policy, the airline confirmed in a statement.

Wearing face coverings on planes is not mandated by law, but airlines have instituted their own mask requirements for crew and passengers.

American Airlines confirmed the incident aboard Flight 1263 from New York's LaGuardia to Dallas/Fort Worth, saying that Straka declined to wear a face covering.

Straka was rebooked on a later flight after he agreed to comply with company policies, the airline said, and American is reaching out to him for more information on the incident.

Straka said he wore a mask the company provided but took it off once he was on board the plane and no one complained.

Straka told CNN in a phone interview that the flight was close to departing when "one of the flight attendants came to me pretty aggressively and said, 'Sir, you need to be wearing your mask. ' And I said, 'Well, I don't have one. '"

When asked about masks, Straka said he is anti-mask for himself, but he sees it as a personal decision.

The flight attendant said he needed to wear a mask to be on the flight, Straka said, and indicated that it was a law.

When asked by CNN whether he has a medical condition, Straka declined to comment but said, "I find it difficult and prohibitive to wear a mask, yes. "

He said that he has never before had a problem with not wearing a mask on flights.

Not one single time, even with this airline," Straka said.

While US aviation officials have not mandated face coverings for air travelers, the head of the Federal Aviation Administration said in congressional testimony Wednesday that passengers are expected to wear masks when directed by flight attendants.

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