Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

14.00 28 Oct 2019


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The high levels of anti-social behaviour on public transport need to be urgently addressed, according to Fianna Fáil's Jim O'Callaghan.

New figures released by the Transport Minister show anti-social behaviour has been increasing on Irish Rail and DART services since 2017.

There were 190 reports of anti-social behaviour incidents reported across the DART network in both 2017 and 2018, while there have been 210 incidents reports so far this year.

Nationally, there were 789 reports last year, and there have been 785 incidents reported so far in 2019.

Irish Rail is "concerned at the worsening trend", and says it is taking action to address the situation.

Deputy O'Callaghan, meanwhile, today said something has to been done soon - stressed that the problem must be taken "much more seriously" than it has been.

The Fianna Fáil justice spokesperson observed: "[The numbers] are in line with what has been said to me by people travelling on DART or on rail services - there's an increased amount of drunkenness, drug use and racist abuse as well... It's a growing problem.

"We need to be much less tolerant of [...] anti-social and criminal behaviour on our rail system - if these things happened in the air, on airplanes, there'd be serious repercussions in respect of it.

Deputy O'Callaghan also said that the National Bus and Rail Union's calls for a dedicated transport police should be considered.

He noted: "We need to look at the whole issue of transport police.

"I think the legislature and the minister need to look at bringing in laws that will give the power to An Garda Síochana to require people to disperse."

Main image: Fianna Fáil justice spokesperson Jim O'Callaghan. Photo: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie

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