A TRAVEL ban will come into force for millions of people in Scotland from Friday.

Announcing the news on Tuesday, Nicola Sturgeon confirmed those living in Level 3 and Level 4 areas must not travel out of their own council area by law.

Speaking at the coronavirus briefing in Edinburgh on Wednesday, the First Minister said: “Let me be very candid – I know that it doesn’t sit easily with anybody, including me, to be told that you can’t travel freely within the country, I absolutely understand that.

“But many countries have restrictions like this in place right now to help stop the virus spreading from area to area and that’s particularly important in Scotland where we are deliberately trying to take a more localised approach, we are trying to avoid the whole country having to go into Level 4 restrictions.

“To be blunt, we can only keep relatively low levels of restrictions in areas with low levels of the virus if we ensure that people don’t travel to these areas from other parts of Scotland with high levels of the virus.”

What are the rules?

People living in Level 3 or Level 4 cannot travel outside their own council area, except for “essential” purposes.

Also, those living outwith these areas cannot enter them – again except for “essential” purposes.

And all travel between Scotland and the rest of the UK, except for “essential” reasons, must be avoided.

What merits ‘essential’ travel?

According to the Scottish Government, the following is ‘essential’ travel:

•             Travel for work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, but only where that cannot be done from your home.

•             Travel to school, college, or university where teaching is not provided remotely.

•             (To and from Level 3 areas but not Level 4) travel for under 18s sport

•             Travel for essential shopping only where it is not possible in your local authority area – you should use online shopping or shops, banks and other services in your local area wherever you can.

•             Travel for healthcare, social care, childcare and other essential services, including recycling, but only if they are not available in your local area.

•             Travel to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person.

•             Travel to visit a person receiving treatment in a hospital, staying in a hospice or care home, or to accompany a pregnant woman, vulnerable person or child to a medical appointment.

•             Travel for shared parenting or travel between the two parts of an extended household.

•             Travel to meet a legal obligation, including attending court or satisfying bail conditions, or to participate in legal proceedings.

•             Travel for essential animal welfare reasons, such as feeding a horse or going to a vet.

•             Local outdoor informal exercise such as walking, cycling, golf, or running (in groups of up to 6 people from no more than 2 households) that starts and finishes at the same place.

•             Travel locally (within around 5 miles of your local authority area) to reach a place to take exercise outdoors.

•             Travel for weddings, civil partnership registrations, funerals and other “life events” (such as bar mitzvahs and christenings).

•             If you are a minister of religion or worship leader travel to your place of worship.

•             (To or from Level 3 areas, but not Level 4) travel to your normal place of worship.

•             Travel to give blood at a Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service collection session.

•             Travel to transit through Level 3 and 4 areas by road or public transport if your journey begins and ends outside such an area.

•             Travel to move house.

•             Travel to avoid injury, illness or to escape a risk of harm.

Dunfermline Press: Nicola Sturgeon outlined the rules in the Scottish ParliamentNicola Sturgeon outlined the rules in the Scottish Parliament

Who is impacted by the travel ban?

This will be applied in the Glasgow City Council area, as well as Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire, East Ayrshire, South Ayrshire, Stirling and West Lothian.

Residents in the City of Edinburgh Council area along with Angus, Clackmannanshire, Falkirk, Inverclyde, North Ayrshire, Dundee, Fife and Perth and Kinross will also be subject to the travel restrictions in Level 3.

How will police enforce the rules?

John Swinney said those caught breaching the travel restrictions could be given a fixed penalty notice.

However Police Scotland said enforcement will only be used “as a last resort” when there is a clear breach.

Assistant Chief Constable Alan Speirs said: Our officers will continue to engage with the public, explain the legislation and guidance and encourage compliance.

“We will use enforcement as a last resort where there is a clear breach.

"The Chief Constable has said publicly on numerous occasions that we will not be routinely stopping vehicles or setting up road blocks, and that will not change as a result of travel restrictions now being in law.

“However, officers may in the course of their duties come across people who are travelling from one local authority area to another.

“In areas where travel restrictions apply, they will continue to use the common sense, discretion and excellent judgement they have applied so far.”