Scottish public transport restrictions may be eased area by area

Areas of the country may be treated differently in the planned third phase of lockdown easing.

Thursday, 21st May 2020, 1:42 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st May 2020, 2:11 pm
Physical distancing will be required in trains and buses. Picture: Gary Hutchison/SNS.
Physical distancing will be required in trains and buses. Picture: Gary Hutchison/SNS.

An outline of how transport will be affected by the removal of restrictions is included in the “Scotland’s route map through and out of the crisis” document published today by the Scottish Government.

It has been divided into four phases, with the first due to start next Thursday.

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No dates have been given for their duration or the timing of the subsequent phases.

Only one in four seats will be available in some buses. Picture: First Bus.

Travelling short distances for leisure and exercise will be permitted in phase one of the plan, and driving for this “beyond your local area” allowed in phase three.

Businesses will be encouraged to stagger start times for staff and offer flexible working to manage travel demand.

Travel at peak times will be discouraged.

Public transport will be increased in phase two and be fully restored in phase three, but physical distancing may remain in place in phase four.

More details will be published in the Scottish Government’s transport transition plan on Tuesday.

Phase one

“Consistent with the reopening of workplaces set out in this phase, where home working is not possible, businesses and organisations are encouraged to manage travel demand through staggered start times and flexible working patterns.

“You will also be permitted to travel short distances for outdoor leisure and exercise but advice to stay within a short distance of your local community and travel by walk, wheel and cycle where possible.

“International border health measures are set to be introduced.

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Phase two

“Consistent with the reopening of workplaces set out in this phase, it is our plan that the default position is for people to work from home where possible.

“Where that is not possible, businesses and organisations are encouraged to manage travel demand through staggered start times and flexible working patterns.

“We are planning for public transport operating increased services but capacity would still be significantly limited to allow for physical distancing.

“Travel at peak times would remain discouraged as far as possible.

“There may be geographical differences in approaches to transport depending on circumstances.”

Phase three

“You can drive beyond your local area for leisure and exercise purposes.

“Public transport will be operating full services but capacity will still be significantly limited to allow for physical distancing.

“Travel at peak times will be discouraged as far as possible.

“There may be geographical differences in arrangements depending on local circumstances.

Phase four

“Public transport would be operating a full service and capacity.

“Physical distancing may remain in place, subject to scientific advice.”

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