Overcrowding on the northern line commuter trains worsens.

15th October, 2019

I am calling on Minister for Transport Shane Ross to develop a new train service for Donabate after the overcrowding issue on northern line commuter trains worsens.

I spoke with many commuters at Donabate train station last week.

As a fellow train commuter for many years, I have observed how the morning train service from Donabate is seriously inadequate and frequently unsafe. Overcrowding has long been an issue and it is getting worse rather than better. Last week someone fainted on the way into the city and unfortunately, this has not been a rare occurrence.

Our public transport systems should be improving in comfort and frequency and attracting people away from their cars.

Our public transport systems should be improving in comfort and frequency and attracting people away from their cars. Unfortunately, our train service has been going in the opposite direction. We need a public representative who will make the decisions to properly fund and expand good quality public transport

Last week I asked for the help of morning commuters to bring attention to the inadequate service from Donabate and push for a new morning train service to the city that will make train commuting from Donabate a more viable and comfortable option for people. I know many people have contacted the Minister and I encourage more to do so.

I have written to the Minister for Transport and the National Transport Authority to ask them to consider a new train service for Donabate in the morning. Such a service would need to commence much further south on the line than the current services. Trains that start in Dundalk pass through towns with a cumulative population of 135,000 people before they get to Donabate, for those starting at Drogheda it’s 95,000. However, those starting in Balbriggan or Skerries pass through populations of 55,000 and 30,000 respectively before they get to Donabate. Such trains would be much less crowded than current services which all start in either Dundalk or Drogheda. I have explored the possibility of services starting at Donabate but carriages coming from Dublin City cannot cross tracks to the return track until Skerries or Balbriggan.

This issue has been persisting for too long and at the moment with all the feeder towns to the northern commuter line expanding some serious investment is needed that government appears to be unwilling to do.