Eamon Gilmore TD

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Iarnród Eireann must revisit cut in number of peak time DART services

Issued : Friday 22 January, 2010

The Labour Party Leader, Deputy Eamon Gilmore has called on Iarnród Eireann to revisit, as a matter of urgency, the cut in the number of peak time train services on the Southside DART network.

"The new DART timetable brought in late last year has resulted in fewer services operating on the Southside section of the route, particularly during peak commuting times. As a result of this change a number of peak time trains are packed to over capacity raising serious health and safety concerns for rail users. The cut has also led to delays for commuters getting to work, greatly adding to their stress levels in what is already a stressful time for workers.

 "I am also concerned that we do not see a move from disgruntled commuters leaving the DART in favour of bringing their car in to work, something which I believe is firmly at odds with Government Policy but could be a real consequence if the frequency of trains is not improved.

 "I have been in regular communication with Iarnród Eireann since early December arguing for a revision of the decision to reduce the number of rush hour trains. While I appreciate the Agency’s intention to balance the provision of services there is a need to provide at the very least an addition service from Bray/Greystones between 7.55 am and 8.15 am. This additional service would I believe alleviate much of the dangerous over crowding that exists at the moment.

 "In December Minister Noel Dempsey in response to pressure on this issue from the Labour Spokesperson for Transport Tommy Broughan TD insisted that Iarnród Eireann is trying to ensure ‘that it runs the trains at the times sought most by passengers’. It would appear to me that the Minister needs to take a rush hour DART from Shankill to the City Centre one morning to see for himself how badly these objectives are being met."