Friday 15 December 2017

Work's over for the day? It's time to get the sardine tin home

DART trains
DART trains

During a recent visit to Dublin I decided to visit my old stomping ground in Bray for a nostalgic day trip - I was stationed there back in 2000 as a garda inspector.

Instead of driving I took the DART from Tara Street. I was looking forward to a comfortable ride.

Instead I had to stand most of the way, packed like a sardine with hardly room to breathe. Even making allowances for rush hour it was jammed.

It was around 6pm when I boarded. It was an unpleasant and uncomfortable journey.

I spoke to a number of equally disgruntled commuters who bitterly complained that chronic overcrowding was now the norm on most DART services at rush hour.


Indeed, packed and overcrowded trains are not the sole preserve of the DART.

On a number of recent visits to Dublin I had same experience on the Mallow to Dublin Inter City train.

Whichever weekends I travelled, I found them crammed and overcrowded with many people forced to stand for most of the journey.

I cannot understand why extra carriages are not provided for the growing number of people availing of the service.

This is only an occasional inconvenience for me as I use the Inter City service infrequently.

However, rail overcrowding is a different kettle of fish for the commuters in Dublin who are subjected to chronic cramming on DART and on commuter rail, according to recent media reports.

Last Sunday I read that a number of DART and Irish Rail carriages are lying idle - a quiet incredible state of affairs, especially given the fare increases of recent years. Talk about adding insult to injury.

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