DART users voice their frustrations about timetabling, overcrowding, long delays and poor communication.
Since 1984 Dubliners living along the Dublin Area Rapid Transit (DART) line have been the envy of commuters stuck in bus queues or traffic jams. The DART service was extended to Graystones, County Wicklow in December 2000 and while still a novelty for some, others complain of overcrowding and long delays.
There's a gap every now again at about 8 in the morning, so just at the right time that you’d need to get a DART, they’re not there.
On the north side of Dublin, passengers using the DART to Malahide and Portmarnock complain that trains do not stop at their station even though they have bought a ticket. The promise of a train every seven minutes has not materialised. Over the past 18 months one commuter believes,
The service has got worse, as far as I can see there’s less trains, and there’s more people wanting to use it.
Around 85,000 people use the DART every day and one of the main problems commuters experience during rush hour is overcrowding. Iarnrod Éireann suburban rail manager Michael Murphy says this problem is being addressed. Ten new DART cars have been put into service. Another 16 new cars will be coming on stream over the coming months and a further 12 added in early 2002.
One commuter interviewed says the current timetable does not adequately spread out the DART and trains. Michael Murphy says scheduling more trains every hour is not a solution as all of the 12 slots in each direction through Dublin city centre are in use.
We cannot run any more trains even if we have them.
A survey by the Central Statistics Office shows 70% of the population still do not use public transport to get to work citing it is not practical or unavailable Iarnrod Éireann still has a lot of work to do to improve on those figures and get more people travelling on the DART.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 7 March 2001. The reporter is Eileen Whelan.