Social distancing on ScotRail trains to be reduced

Physical distancing on ScotRail trains and at stations will be reduced to a minimum of one metre from next week.

ScotRail and Network Rail have announced physical distancing will be reduced to a minimum of one metre in stations and on trains from Monday, July 27.  Pic: Lisa Ferguson
ScotRail and Network Rail have announced physical distancing will be reduced to a minimum of one metre in stations and on trains from Monday, July 27. Pic: Lisa Ferguson

ScotRail and Network Rail will introduce the new measure from Monday, July 27 following the publication of the Scottish Government’s updated guidance earlier this month.

Since the Covid-19 outbreak began, a number of steps have been taken to keep staff and passengers safe on Scotland’s railway while keeping the country moving.

David Simpson, ScotRail operations director, said: “We’ve worked closely with staff, trade union colleagues, and the government to satisfy ourselves that we have sufficient safety measures in place to move to a minimum of one metre physical distancing on trains and at stations.“The provision of face masks and hand sanitisers at our busiest stations are just some of the measures we introduced in recent weeks to keep staff and customers safe.“But we need everybody to continue taking personal responsibility for their travel choices, because physical distancing can’t be guaranteed.

"Customers who do travel with ScotRail should follow our five rules for safer travel, including the wearing of a face covering on trains and at stations.”

Face coverings remain mandatory at stations and on trains.

Platform markings and guidance at ticket vending machines are supporting station announcements and messages on customer information screens, to help customers during their journey.

People are urged to consider alternative travel options where possible, including walking and cycling, to free up space for those who have no choice but to travel by train.

The operator’s five rules for safer travel are:

- do not travel if you feel unwell or have a temperature

- travel away from the main commuting times (7am-9am and 4pm-6.30pm) wherever possible, as trains will be busiest around then. The earliest and latest trains serve key workers, like NHS and care home staff.

- If you think it’s not safe to board a train, don’t do it and wait for another service.

- Wear a face mask or covering and, where possible, maintain physical distancing.

- Be patient. You might not be able to board your first choice of train, as physical distancing means most seats need to be left empty.

The capacity of trains remains significantly reduced to help support physical distancing.

Customers are reminded to buy in advance of travel via the ScotRail app, website, or station facilities to ensure waiting times are reduced and physical distancing supported.

Some stations facilities will remain unavailable to allow for physical distancing. All customers must hold a valid ticket before boarding a train.