More than €100,000 is to be spent on additional security on Iarnród Éireann services over the Christmas period.

The Department of Transport has said €100,000 will be spent on extra security patrols on evening Dart and commuter services between Dublin city centre and Howth, Drogheda, Maynooth, Kildare and Greystones.

A further €15,000 will be used to provide additional security personnel at fleet maintenance depots.

There have been repeated calls from the National Bus and Rail Union for additional security on certain routes, including calls for the establishment of a dedicated Garda Public Transport Policing Division.

Figures released this summer showed that the number of anti-social incidents reported had increased by 43% in a two-year period.

In a letter to the Minister for Justice and the Minister for Transport, NBRU General Secretary Dermot O'Leary said: "It is no exaggeration to say that commuters and staff travelling and working on public transport are doing so in constant fear of either being attacked themselves, or witnessing various forms of anti-social behaviour, up to and including serious assault."

Iarnród Éireann has also previously expressed concern about the cost of removing graffiti from carriages following a reported increase in graffiti attacks on trains.

The company has also banned the consumption of alcohol on certain services as part of a crackdown on anti-social behaviour.