A limit on movement of 2km from peoples' homes was put on certain activities in the new round of Covid-19 measures announced by the Government, writes Justin Treacy.

This limit only applies to exercise, but confusion expressed over social media has prompted a clarification from the Government. 

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar tweeted that the 2km limit is about exercising locally, adding it does not apply to shopping for food or medical supplies.  

The advice on gov.ie on the 2km limit says people can leave their home "for brief individual exercise - within 2 kilometres of your house. You can bring children but must keep 2 metres away from others for social distancing". 

These are the circumstances where people can leave their homes:

  • to shop for food 
  • to collect medical prescriptions and medical supplies and attend medical appointments 
  • to carry out vital services like caring (including family carers) 
  • for farming 

However, people who are being shielded or cocooned cannot leave their homes, apart from going out into their garden if they have one.

Here are some of the questions people are asking. 

Q: My nearest shop is 5km away, am I allowed to travel there?

A: Yes. The 2km limit only applies to exercise. You can travel beyond that limit for shopping for food or medicines or to attend medical appointments. 

Q: The park I usually run in is more than 2km from my home. Am I permitted to drive there to exercise?

A: No. The Government has asked us to exercise within 2km of our homes. 

 Q: I run with a friend and we have been observing physical distancing protocol. Can I continue to do this? 

A: No. The new rules say we should only exercise with those from the same household. 

Handy online tool to work out that 2km radius

Under the new restrictions, people not 'cocooning' can leave their homes for a walk/run within a 2km limit, but what does a 2km radius from your home look like?

Wexford-based software developer Dave Bolger has created a handy online tool to calculate the 2km radius from your home.

Mr Bolger developed the tool last night after Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced the new Covid-19 restrictions. 

Over 250,000 people have used the online tool since 7am this morning.

To check the 2km radius from your address, visit the website here.

Additional reporting Eleanor Mannion