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Unread 24-01-2008, 21:05   #41
Rashers
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http://83.138.170.50/podcasts/audio/...safety%201.mp3
Thanks for that Mark.
2 Interesting points in the interview.
Overcrowding to this extend is acceptable with high frequency, so a passenger can just wait for the next service. However, there is a 40 minute gap in the morning rush hour on the Drogheda line. So there goes that argument.
Passengers can vote with their feet if they are not happy. Again, not a realistic option. The Dublin Bus from Balbriggan via Skerries, Rush, Lusk etc. can take 1-1.5 hours in the morning peak. Hardly an option. Also, would the DTO recommend passengers use their cars if they are unhappy?

Anyway, good to see Newstalk are going to follow up on this one.
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Unread 24-01-2008, 22:05   #42
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Rather disappointed the RSC chief inspector attitude to the problem.

People are regularly standing on intercity trains particularly into Heuston, thats not on.

All very much a case of Irish Rail said it was ok, so its ok. Sadly it will take a nasty incident before someone listens up. The UK had a incident with a rush hour train in 1991 at 5-10mph, 1 dead, 265 injured, ok it was a ancient train but repeat same for a modern train at 30mph result would be nasty

At least in the UK they are getting down to hard data http://www.publications.parliament.u.../201/20107.htm
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Unread 25-01-2008, 09:39   #43
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I get the 17.50 from Dun Laoghaire to Mullingar most evenings and on the new timetable it gets into Mullingar at 19.50 and on the old timetable it use to get in at 19.40 but it still leaves Dun Laoghaire at the same time and stops at the sames stops, which is strange.

It sits outside Enfield waiting on the oncoming Sligo train to pass but the delay is getting worse, as last night the train did not get into Mullingar last night till after 8.00pm. Will resolve over the next few weeks, does anyone know?

All those who want this service removed, shame on you, as there is quite a few that do get off in Mullingar and there is a few like me that travel out to Dun Laoghaire
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Unread 25-01-2008, 10:54   #44
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It took several tragic needless deaths on school buses before the Government did anything about safety there and I'm afraid it looks like it will be the same with the trains.
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Unread 25-01-2008, 12:41   #45
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I know there is two chances of this being still around but does anyone know where i could get the podcast of Tuesdays piece on the Phoenix Park station and the overcrowding issue on newstalk 106
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Unread 29-01-2008, 10:05   #46
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Last night the 18:05 stopped in siding at Killucan at 19:08, an announcement was made that we would be held up for a few minutes due to late running of Sligo - Dublin train. Ended up moving on at 19:22 arriving in Mullingar at 19:30 some 16 minutes late.

As if our day isnt long enough already!

They hardly made up 16 minutes by the time it got to Longford so I wonder does that affect their punctuality stats?
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Unread 29-01-2008, 15:26   #47
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Might be worth a read

From Westmeath Examiner 19/01/2008


http://www.westmeathexaminer.ie/stor...&cid=181&cid2=


Quote:
To hell and back on trains - commuters angry over poor service

Ronan Casey
reports


Commuters from the Mullingar area are seething with Iarnród Éireann over what they claim to be a desperate track record of poor service on the commuter line to and from Dublin.

As the state transport provider introduces new carriages, more expensive fares and a new timetable, commuters who pay upwards of 2,600 euros per year to take the train are livid that they have not been provided with adequate answers to a litany of a complaints.

From late services to overcrowded trains, from unheated carriages to unexplained breakdowns, from false promises to a general lack of passenger information, rail commuters have suffered more than most in recent years, and the Mullingar Commuter Group which represents hundreds of commuters from the area allege that Iarnród Éireann has led them on a 12 month merry go round in 2007.

200 regular train users have signed a petition over the past year, and made comments on the service. They are angry that many of their suggestions have not been taken on board by Iarnród Éireann.

The service has been compared to that of a third world country, and the commuter group members are also livid that many of their complaints have allegedly been “swept under the carpet” by Iarnród Éireann.

The Mullingar Commuter Group, and dozens of other commuters who have contacted the Examiner in recent weeks, want at least some of the following: - An evening service from Dublin to Mullingar. It was suggested that it could be one of the later Maynooth trains which would continue onto Mullingar (or Longford) where it would sit overnight making a new early morning service a possibility.

- An earlier service from Mullingar which would arrive in Dublin before 8am. Commuters feel this could be achieved by either the above, or by moving a 6.45am service from Enfield departing from Mullingar instead at 6.20am.

- A manned helpdesk as commuters feel they are constantly moved between spokespersons. They want to see Iarnród Éireann hire a passenger liaison official. Commuter Derek Newcombe says “Iarnród Éireann customer service is designed to deter passengers from contacting them”.

- Extra carriages, particularly on the 18:05 home from Dublin. One commuter claimed overcrowding on it is so bad that he has not had a seat between Dublin and Maynooth in over 18 months.

The Examiner has seen a log of complaints prepared by the commuter group, and many of the responses from Iarnród Éireann have proved to be contradictory, particularly in relation to timetable changes.

For example, in May 2007, commuter Antoinette Glennon wrote to Iarnród Éireann wondering if the weekday 7am service from Longford to Dublin was going to start in Sligo from the start of 2008. Michael Power of Iarnród Éireann said the company had “no plans to start it in Sligo when we change the timetable in December”. Then, in December, the company revealed that the new 07:26 service from Mullingar would, in fact, start in Sligo.

In a communication to Mullingar Commuter Group member Eleanor Maher in October 2007, Paul Slowey from Iarnród Éireann promised a much sought after night service after 7pm.

“Following various representations, we will be operating an additional service from Pearse Street Station to Mullingar at 9pm, serving all stations in between,” trumpeted Mr. Slowey. However, there was to be a quick about turn from Iarnród Éireann, who explained a few days later that “we looked seriously at operating a 9pm service, (but) due to driver and rolling stock resources, this could only be achieved by cancelling the 18:17 service beyond Maynooth.”

Heating on the train has been a big issue for commuters. Some claim there was no heat for a full three weeks in November. “The lack of heat during the winter has become an annual event,” said commuter Derek Newcombe. “This is just a total lack of respect shown by Iarnród Éireann to their passengers.”

However, it is unlikely that new trains will be laid on early in the morning as Iarnród Éireann made it clear in numerous communications that they are prioritising improvements to the stations with the greatest numbers between Maynooth and Ashtown. “Very heavy loadings are being experienced on certain trains with the result that, on occasion, passengers are being left behind at stations,” a spokesman detailed last year.

He explained that providing an extra service out of Mullingar in the morning within the current carriage resources “would require significant alterations in scheduling with either an extra set in Longford in the morning or running a very early morning service out of Dublin. With both distance and time involved this would be at the expense of passengers at intermediate stations, where the need is greatest.”

Commuters also refute Iarnród Éireann claims that the route has a punctuality rating consistently over 95%. One commuter alleges that some evenings the Dublin/Sligo services are late leaving Dublin and reaching Mullingar, but because they make up the time elsewhere on the track, by the time they reach Sligo they are not regarded as late.

A three-hour breakdown which made national headlines in early November last year was not an isolated incident, with commuters detailing several similar breakdowns which received little attention. They also claimed some of these were unexplained.
Responses

This week, Iarnród Éireann`s chief spokesperson Barry Kenny said all breakdowns are explained to passengers. He also held out some hope for further timetable changes to be taken on board. He said a 9pm service “is something we would like to introduce ourselves” and he predicted there would be demand for this “good service”. But to introduce it now, something has to give.

“With the amount of rolling stock on the line and available crews we would have to cancel the 18:17 service, which is an important service as it is. The number of people discommoded by this would far exceed the amount of people the later service would satisfy. However, as we go forward, it is certainly something we aspire to introduce, and we will certainly look at doing so in the near future as at that stage new rolling stock and train crews will be available. At the moment, we must use what we have to prioritise our peak time services.”

He indicated that a service after 7pm will be considered for the next timetable change.
He said they do take commuters` views on board when they prepare new timetables, and will continue to do so. This may see the 6.43am Enfield service move back down the line to leave Mullingar instead.

“We will certainly look at this in the future. What Mullingar passengers need to be aware of is that the service is ONLY going to expand in the future, and an extra morning service is an area we`re looking into.” He said there are “competing demands” at the moment, which is making a decision on this not feasible at present.

He admitted there has been “intermittent faults on the fleet” with their heating system, “but we have put additional maintenance resources to that and we hope to see an immediate improvement there.” He said the company has a customer services office, customer services manager and a service planning manager who all “endeavour to assist customers in every regard and will continue to do so” so there was no need to hire a liaison officer.

He concluded by saying there are no plans for extra carriages to augment the four for the 18:05 service as, by the time it leaves Maynooth, there are seats.

Last edited by ThomasJ : 29-01-2008 at 15:44.
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Unread 29-01-2008, 15:40   #48
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Yes I seen that when it was published. By the way has any one actually had 'contact' with this mysterious Mullingar Commuter Group - I've been on the train about 4 years now and have never seen a survey or been approached to join or anything. Is there a secret handshake / password that you have to know or is it those 4 or 5 lads doling out the beer most nights in the front carriage on the 18:05? Mmmmm I wonder......
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Unread 30-01-2008, 16:49   #49
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I found this website when I was looking for a place to complain to Irish Rail and also to see how other commuters were dealing with the hassles of commuting. I have just got a reply from IE with reagrd to my initial complaint about the unacceptable overcrowding on Jan 21st.


"Thank you for your email of 22nd January regarding your journey on the 18.05 hrs. service from Connolly on 21st January, 2008.
Due to faults on two railcar sets on the day in question, services to Maynooth and Longford ran as smaller trains than normal, causing a spill over to the 18.05 hrs. train resulting in heavy loadings on this train also. I would like to apologise for the discomfort that this caused.
As with commuter railways throughout Europe, passengers may not be guaranteed a seat for the whole journey at peak times. I would like to assure you that we are making full use of our available carriage fleet to maximise the number of services operated. We have also increased the frequency of service on the Sligo route and these services will serve Mullingar station."
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Unread 30-01-2008, 22:25   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ballymore View Post
By the way has any one actually had 'contact' with this mysterious Mullingar Commuter Group - I've been on the train about 4 years now and have never seen a survey or been approached to join or anything.
I signed two petitions back when I used that service... one in 2005 to get an extra express service between 17.00 and 19.00 (which possibly contributed to what has become the 18.05)... another in the middle of last year which I think was a general complaint regarding delays, heat, lack of evening services, overcrowding etc.
Don't think there's any formal "group" though.
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Unread 31-01-2008, 12:34   #51
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I see, I was just wondering as they have often been quoted in local press. The mystery lives on the phantom 'Mullingar Commuter Group'.
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Unread 31-01-2008, 13:01   #52
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I know someone who 'set up' his own group when he was unhappy with the way some other group he belonged to was operating.

He was quoted in the papers regularly as something along the lines of "North Dublin Concerned Citizens Against Animal Cruelty" despite the fact he was the only person in the organisation. You may well find that the Mullingar Commuter Group operates on a similar basis.

z
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Unread 31-01-2008, 14:30   #53
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You might be right, maybe the next quote in the newspapers will be from the 'Continuity Mullingar Commuter Group'
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Unread 31-01-2008, 14:44   #54
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Just like to confirm that according to the internal Irish Rail timetable the 18:05 service is rostered to be 4 coaches in length only
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Unread 01-02-2008, 16:13   #55
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I think the real root question here should be: why are you commuting from Mullingar to Dublin?
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Unread 01-02-2008, 16:51   #56
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Quote:
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I think the real root question here should be: why are you commuting from Mullingar to Dublin?
Eh primarily because I feel overall despite the travelling I have a better standard of life, as do my kids, living out in the country rather than being cooped up in a cramped semi d with noisy nosy neighbours and a chicken run for a back garden. Additionally they go to a nice school which unlike IE carriages isnt over crowded.

And partly because at one stage it looked like my job might relocate out that direction but it didnt happen.
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Unread 02-02-2008, 00:33   #57
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I think the real root question here should be: why are you commuting from Mullingar to Dublin?
early contender for worst post of the year.

the fact is that the planning of this country over the past 17 years has left people with no option but ot do this. While we do occcasionally will advise people not to move out to Nass/Salins/Mullingar just to commute we do this because we know it'll be hell and the impending movee dosnt.

Having a pop at someone for living there is beyond the bounds of decency to me, and you're lucky i havent gotten round to creating a new infraction offence for being a dick.
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Unread 03-02-2008, 13:19   #58
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Originally Posted by Thomas J Stamp View Post
early contender for worst post of the year.

the fact is that the planning of this country over the past 17 years has left people with no option but ot do this. While we do occcasionally will advise people not to move out to Nass/Salins/Mullingar just to commute we do this because we know it'll be hell and the impending movee dosnt.

Having a pop at someone for living there is beyond the bounds of decency to me, and you're lucky i havent gotten round to creating a new infraction offence for being a dick.
Well done on reading something into the post that wasn't there. I was merely interested to know why people would put themselves through such a long commute. In this case, the OP has said he enjoys a better quality of life despite all the travelling, so that's fair enough.

I don't buy into this "no choice" thing. There is always a choice about where you can live as far as I'm concerned.

My post wasn't meant as an attack on the OP and I don't think he took it as such, so why you did is beyond me.
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Unread 03-02-2008, 22:27   #59
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Originally Posted by plant43 View Post
Well done on reading something into the post that wasn't there. I was merely interested to know why people would put themselves through such a long commute. In this case, the OP has said he enjoys a better quality of life despite all the travelling, so that's fair enough.

I don't buy into this "no choice" thing. There is always a choice about where you can live as far as I'm concerned.

My post wasn't meant as an attack on the OP and I don't think he took it as such, so why you did is beyond me.
Seriosly you cant believe that. A lot of people have no choice. Dublin costs a fortune to live in, its infeisable for most people. All cities work like this, all cities have a commuter belt. But most cities have modern systems and good roads. Dublin doenst. Dublin is an overpriced poorly developed sprawl with an overstretched inadequate public transport system.
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Unread 03-02-2008, 22:52   #60
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In other forums the question would be reasonable, sadly here this is the forum for victims of the poor planning in this state.

I had the very strange experience of talking to a transport planner about this very issue and purely on the numbers 30+ miles is not a runner, plain inefficient use of resources. This person lived 41 miles out . If you did that you could carry huge amount of extra people, purely on the basis of you can pack'em in to crush levels and more efficient train use. The horse bolted about 1997 way way too late now, if only the DRRTS study of 1975 was implemented (and it could have been) we wouldn't be here

Can't recommend anyone commuting by rail beyond the Dublin suburban boundary (Maynooth/Greystones/Balbriggan/Hazelhatch). We do our best if you are stuck already.

The government has put a large number of people in limbo with decentralisation, people have moved outwards on the promise (or contractual requirement) of the office moving to a certain town, hasn't happened.

Last edited by Mark Gleeson : 03-02-2008 at 22:54.
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