Travel on Shetland’s inter-island ferries has been restricted to essential travellers only by the council.
This follows the Scottish and UK governments saying that only critical travel can be undertaken by the public.
Critical travel is defined as:
- Shopping for basic necessities;
- Access to medical care or medical needs such as pharmacies;
- Travel to take care of vulnerable people;
- Travelling to and from work where work cannot be done from home.
These changes to inter-island travel come in addition to already reduced timetables, with ferries restricted to island residents, those who have a critical need to travel to or from the Mainland and for essential freight, supplies or business.
Travellers have an individual responsibility to consider their journey and be prepared, if challenged, to prove they are an islander and/or provide proof of their need to travel.
For residents this could be a recent utility bill, plus photo ID. Further information on key workers, those needing access to or from the islands in the course of their business, will be issued by the council soon.
Business and freight can continue to use the services, observing NHS health advice on reducing the risk of coronavirus transmission.
While onboard, passengers in vehicles should remain in their vehicles. Passengers in the saloons should stay two metres apart, observe good hand hygiene, catch coughs and sneezes and avoid touching their face.
An account system is being introduced, doing away with cash payments, meaning island residents and those delivering and providing essential services will have their own account set up.