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'Snake not valid face covering' bus company says
17 September 2020, 08:58 | Updated: 17 September 2020, 09:49
Authorities have confirmed a snake is not a valid face-covering after a man was spotted with one wrapped around his head on a bus.
The commuter and his reptilian mask, which was wrapped around his neck and mouth, were seen on a bus from Swinton to Manchester on Monday.
One passenger, who asked not to be named, said she initially thought the man was wearing a "funky mask" before she spotted it slithering over the handrails.
She said she found the incident "really funny" and that the animal did not seem to be bothering any of her fellow passengers, adding: "No-one batted a eyelid."
Pictures showed the man was not wearing a mask under the snake.
Using a face covering on public transport is mandatory, except for those who are exempt for reasons of age, health or disability.
The snake is not the first alternative face-covering commuters concerned over Covid have used.
Previously people have been pictured on public transport with plastic bags on their heads, or even a plastic jar!
A Transport for Greater Manchester spokesperson said: "Government guidance clearly states that this needn't be a surgical mask, and that passengers can make their own or wear something suitable, such as a scarf or bandana.
"While there is a small degree of interpretation that can be applied to this, we do not believe it extends to the use of snakeskin - especially when still attached to the snake."