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Steelers: Fans will be required to wear masks at Heinz Field in 2020

The Pittsburgh Steelers announced this week that fans will be required to wear face masks at home games due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic should spectators be allowed into Heinz Field during the 2020 season.

The Steelers informed season-ticket holders of the policy in an email on Wednesday. Steelers spokesman Burt Lauten further explained the decision in a statement shared on the team’s official site.

“Our goal is to still have fans at Heinz Field this year with the understanding that social distancing, as well as all fans being required to wear masks, will play a role in the capacity to ensure a safe atmosphere,” the statement read. “We will continue to work with the NFL and public health officials to finalize plans for fans to attend our home games.

“We are communicating with our season ticket holders to make them aware of the digital ticketing process we will employ this season at Heinz Field for a more flexible solution as we prepare for potential reduced capacity. We will continue the process of allowing our fans to opt out of their 2020 season tickets if they feel they are uniquely affected by the current situation.”

In the email sent to season-ticket holders, the Steelers indicated full refunds for the 2020 season are an option. Those fans who decide to go that route will not lose the option to renew for the 2021 season.

The Steelers are presently working with the NFL and local public health officials to devise a plan through which fans would be allowed to attend the team’s home games at Heinz Field. That being said, despite the NFL’s continued insistence that a full 16-game regular season will be held, there is no guarantee the COVID-19 outbreak will allow it to happen, let alone have fans in attendance at any point.

The Steelers’ announcement arrived along with the news this week that the division-rival Baltimore Ravens will severely limit the amount of fans allowed to attend home games at M&T Bank Stadium in 2020. According to the Ravens, attendance will be limited to 14,000, if fans are allowed to attend games in–person at all. The Ravens’ home stadium boats a 62,000-seat capacity.