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Bus Services Must Improve

Green TD – Steven Matthews heavily criticised Dublin Bus, Go-Ahead Ireland and the National Transport Authority (NTA) at the Oireachtas Transport Committee. The three organisations were there to answer questions in relation to inadequate services following Deputy Matthews calls for their appearance. The Deputy raised a series of issues including inaccurate timetables, buses failing to arrive, staff retention and so called ‘ghost buses’ amongst other areas of concern related to the provision of bus services. Discussing the issue, Deputy Matthews said:

“As a member of the Oireachtas Transport Committee, I called Dublin Bus, Go Ahead Ireland and the NTA before the committee to answer questions on what has been consistent failings in meeting their service obligations that appear to be worsening.

“I am contacted on a daily basis by constituents who have been left standing at bus stops with no sign of a bus coming, the app saying one thing and the real time information at the stop saying another. This is not acceptable.

“Public transport at its core needs to be frequent, reliable and affordable. The Green Party have delivered a huge cut in public transport fares to address affordability but in this instance, the bus companies are failing in their duty to provide reliable and frequent services.

“During the committee session, I raised the example of a student working part time in Bray left stranded by a Go-Ahead service, so he had to spend his evening’s wages on a taxi home. That is the human reality of cancelled services and when looking at issues like this, it’s important to remember of the practical impact these failings by bus companies have beyond the statistics.

“Another key issue is communication with customers. The app and real time information needs to be reliable. If a bus has been cancelled, this should be communicated well in advance so that a commuter can consider other options rather than standing out in the rain at a bus stop. Both Dublin Bus and Go-Ahead flagged concerns about software failings in their systems but this cannot be allowed impact the commuter. These issues need to be resolved immediately and accurate real time information is required on all routes.

“Both Dublin Bus and Go Ahead offered assurances to the Committee that plans are in place to restore services to pre pandemic standards and to restore public confidence in these services. If anyone wishes to raise a specific issue in relation to a particular route, I would be more than happy to engage directly with the Bus provider on their behalf”, concluded Deputy Matthews.



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