Bus disruptions in Tallaght need ‘zero tolerance’ approach

By Maurice Garvey

DEDICATED transport police are required to tackle an “escalation of intimidation” on the route of the 27 Dublin Bus, according to Fianna Fáil TD, John Lahart.

In the wake of recent disruptions to the 27 route Deputy Lahart believes “zero tolerance” measures are required to “protect passengers experiencing repeated incidents of anti-social behaviour on public transport in our community.”

Dublin Bus 27 stock

Dublin Bus were forced to alter the route of the 27 bus four times in 12 days due to anti-social behaviour in the Brookfield area of Tallaght.

Yesterday evening Dublin Bus were forced to alter the route of the bus due to anti-social behaviour, while on Tuesday the operator issued notice that another route diversion was in place from 4.30pm to 5.30pm.

On Saturday, the 27 route was forced to bypass Brookfield via the N81.

The Echo understands youths have been throwing objects at the bus, and have tried to ‘scut’ a lift off the back of the vehicle.

Seven days earlier, Dublin Bus were forced to curtail the service with the bus not going past Brookfield at all.

Deputy Lahart said: “The intimidation of bus users and drivers which has recently escalated on the number 27 route in the Brookfield area must stop, and a zero tolerance approach must be taken to challenge the culprits and combat incidents of public disorder.

“This can only be done by a number of dedicated transport police, possibly from the Traffic Corps of An Garda Síochána, who are visible and frequently patrolling our buses and Luas line in an attempt to deter crime on our public transport system.

“Fianna Fáil has long proposed to set up a specific public transport police section within An Garda Síochána. This proposal is fully outlined in our party manifesto.”

Deputy Lahart feels a “collaborative effort” between community groups, youth services and addiction services would “also help significantly to tackle this kind of challenging behaviour.”

A spokesperson for Dublin Bus said: “Regarding your queries on the diversions to route 27 due to anti-social behaviour, Dublin Bus operates a fleet of 987 buses with 400,000 customer journeys a day. While the operation of such a large-scale operation is challenging, the level of anti-social behaviour is relatively low.

“This is due, in part, to our commitment to embrace and foster community relations while also implementing physical mechanisms that protect our customers and employees who avail of our services. Dublin Bus has a strong and close working relationship with An Garda Síochána and has set up a number of community forums in different areas across the city. These are regularly attended by our Area Managers and our Area Operations Manager.”

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