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Major Service Disruption May 28th

May 28th 2019

This mornings disruption impacted up 15,000 journeys. The fault occurred at 0530, but no notice was given until 0609, it took almost 2.5 hours to partially restore sevices, delays even 7 hours later remain signficant with no assurance a full evening service can be provided.

Mark Gleeson, Spokesperson Rail Users Ireland, "There was an unacceptable delay in informing passengers of the issue and the scale of the delay, this is not the first time this has occured, there clearly is a systematic problem inside Irish Rail when it comes to communication. This cannot continue."

Information provided by Irish Rail online, its app and by twitter was unclear, claims no trains were running while passengers were reporting the opposite. Passengers need timely, accurate and actionable information.

Passengers boarding the 0705 train at Waterford some 95 minutes after the fault occurred were not informed of the problem until after departure. This is a breach of EU regulations and shows the breakdown in communications within Irish Rail.

Passengers on the 0520 Athlone Dublin were left stranded outside Clara for several hours and finally reached Dublin 3 hours 30 minutes late.

Irish Rail once again failed in its legal obligation to provide passengers with the required information about the delay, alternative arrangements and the right to refund.

Strictly speaking this mornings incident was not a signalling fault, but a failure of the control room in Connolly station. This facility is outdated and completely unsuitable for the operation of a modern railway.

Irish Rail by its own admission failed to implement its local control contingency quickly enough. Had local control been taken promptly, it is likely an almost full service could have been provided with limited delays. There is an unwillingness with Irish Rail to use the backup plan despite the fact it is fully certified and approved for use.

Rail Users Ireland reminds passengers that pursuant to EC1371/2007 article 16, passengers impacted this morning are entitled to one of the following at no cost.

1. Full refund

2. Rerouting, i.e. ticket limited to a specific train can now be used on any train

3. You are entitled to make the journey on a different date

4. If you started your journey and were forced to return to your origin as the delay meant your journey was no longer required, full refund of the entire ticket is due


These rules apply to all tickets purchased prior to the passenger being informed of the delay. This applies to all tickets including taxsaver tickets.

We call on Irish Rail to:

1. Immediately refund all passengers holding reservations arriving or departing Dublin before 11am this morning without need to waste time and money sending in refund claims.

2. To demonstrate at least quarterly that the local control contingency works. While staff may be trained they need real world hands on experience under pressure.

3. Demonstrate there are sufficent trained staff nationwide to be able staff the local emergency control points promptly to ensure service can be resumed.

4. To comply with its obligations under EC1371/2007 in terms of customer communication and compensation.

Last Updated: May 28 2019 13:54:31
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