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File photo Lucy Coffey
Stone Throwing

Dublin Bus reaches agreement with drivers over anti-social behaviour in Tallaght

Drivers had threatened to curtail a number of routes next week.

Updated 2pm

THE NATIONAL BUS and Rail Union (NBRU) has reached an agreement with Dublin Bus in relation to anti-social behaviour in Tallaght, after the union threatened to curtail a number of services if issues were not addressed.

Last week the union highlighted driver concerns about youths ‘scutting’ (clinging to the back of a vehicle to hitch a ride) on the new ‘SG’ model buses in Tallaght and Finglas. They have been asking the company and National Transport Authority in recent weeks to consider changes to the design of the buses to prevent this.

Drivers also spoke about other forms of anti-social behaviour like stone-throwing, which they say is happening regularly. This morning reported that NBRU representatives from the Ringsend and Clontarf depots had put management on notice that a “rolling withdrawal of routes in West Tallaght will commence from 6pm Monday 11 September”.

This curtailment would have seen drivers on the 27, 77a and 65b routes terminate at the Square Shopping Centre after 6pm. Further service withdrawals were also threatened.

Following an emergency meeting today, management reached an agreement with both the NBRU and Siptu which stated:

  • All incidents of stone throwing and anti-social behaviour must be recorded by the radio controller and the bus must be sent to the garda station in Tallaght.
  • A report of any incident much be submitted by the driver within 24 hours and inspectors must log all incidents in the control diary.
  • In the event of an incident, the driver will inform the controller and curtailments will be put in place.
  • An inspector will attend the scene and will should they decide to re-instate the service, they must maintain a visible presence in the area for a minimum of one hour afterwards.
  • Should a serious incident occur before 8pm, buses will be withdrawn for a minimum of one hour. Should a second incident occur, buses will be withdrawn from the area for the remainder of the day.
  • Buses will also be withdrawn for the entire night if an incident occurs after 8pm.

The agreement will be enacted from first services this Sunday, 10 September.

NBRU representative Sean Yeates said the overall situation will be reviewed and “drivers should pay particular attention to the agreement and ensure controllers do not operate outside it”.

In its letter to the company earlier this week, the NBRU had said “no frontline worker should have to endure such treatment, yet Dublin Bus management expects drivers just to put up with these horrid working conditions,” the NBRU said.

It referenced one location in which it said a manager was writing to numerous drivers “forcing them” back onto a troublesome route.

This is indicative of Dublin Bus’ treatment of staff. In other instances we’ve had drivers who have been subject to projectile assault report that they felt shaken up to be told ‘continue or go sick’.

“The reality on the ground for bus drivers is that these incidents are continuing to rise in number despite the best efforts of An Garda Síochána and some in the community.”

Yesterday Dublin Bus said:

“From time to time we may curtail services in an area for a period of time due to incidents of anti-social behaviour in order to protect our customers and employees.

“Dublin Bus is committed to serving the area of west Tallaght and is working closely with An Garda Síochana, local elected representatives and the community through the community forum in the area.”

Read: Row breaks out in Dublin Bus over youths ‘scutting’ on the back of new buses>

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