Watch: Videos of flyers cheering after mask mandate lifted midair go viral
Several videos of passengers of a New York- San Francisco flight cheering as the cabin crew announced that masks were no longer mandatory on domestic flights are going viral on social media. This comes at a time Covid-19 infections in New York, Connecticut are on the rise in the past few weeks and the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron and its sublineage BA.2.12.1 are estimated to make up more than 90% of the coronavirus variants in the United States.
Several flights have reportedly lifted the mask mandate after US district judge Kathryn Mizelle overturned the government's extended mask mandate on April 18.
According to the viral video posted on Twitter by many passengers who were on the flight, a flight attendant said the mask will be optional for all crew and passengers as well and before he could finish the sentence, passengers clapped and cheered. One passenger could also be seen waving the mask in the air and then keeping it inside the seat pocket. The announcer also said those who want to continue wearing the masks are free to do so. "In that way, we can alleviate stress and discomfort," the attendant said.
Apart from Delta, several major airlines including Jetblue, Spirit and Southwest have reportedly made masks optional.
Delta Airlines has already come under fire for stating that Covid-19 has transitioned to an 'ordinary seasonal virus', a statement which the airlines later retracted. As epidemiologists on social media slammed Delta Airlines for making such an irresponsible statement, it later corrected it and said Covid-19 and transitioned to a 'more manageable respiratory virus - with better treatments, vaccines and other scientific measures to prevent serious illness'.
A county in China's eastern Anhui province is carrying out daily nucleic acid tests on 763,000 locked down residents while mass tests have been ordered for other areas, as authorities scramble to contain a fresh surge in Covid-19 cases in the country. For China, it will have to be a pragmatic balance between its avowed zero-Covid strategy - marked by lockdowns, large-scale testing campaigns and strict isolation protocols - and allowing normal economic activity.
President Joe Biden said he spoke with officials in Illinois after a mass shooting in a suburb of Chicago and pledged federal law enforcement assistance in finding the gunman. Six were killed and dozens injured in an attack on an Independence Day parade in Highland Park, according to the Lake County Sheriff's office. The suspect remained at large as of late afternoon on Monday.
A hacker has claimed to have procured a trove of personal information from the Shanghai police on one billion Chinese citizens, which tech experts say, if true, would be one of the biggest data breaches in history. The anonymous internet user, identified as "ChinaDan", posted on hacker forum Breach Forums last week offering to sell the more than 23 terabytes (TB) of data for 10 bitcoin, equivalent to about $200,000.
The Eiffel Tower is riddled with rust and in need of full repairs, but instead it is being given a cosmetic 60 million euro paint job ahead of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, according to confidential reports cited by French magazine Marianne. However confidential reports by experts cited by Marianne suggest the monument is in a poor state and riddled with rust.
Gunfire erupted at a Fourth of July parade route in the wealthy Chicago suburb of Highland Park on Monday, the Lake County Sheriff's office said. WGN TV, citing unidentified law enforcement sources, said at least one person was feared dead with multiple injuries. The parade was suddenly halted when shots were fired about 10 minutes after it began, sending hundreds of people running for safety, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.