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left standing

Would you have given up your seat on packed train to this boy's granny?

A 13-year-old has complained that his granny and a pregnant woman were among those forced to stand for three hours on an Irish Rail train.

THERE HAS BEEN some outrage today at the story relayed by a 13-year-old boy in which he says his granny, aged 76, was left standing on an Irish Rail train for three hours.

The complaint by Zach McCarthy from Blackrock in Dublin was published on the letters page of The Irish Examiner on Wednesday.

letter part The Irish Examiner The Irish Examiner

Today Zach explained to the Pat Kenny show on Newstalk that he had used his confirmation money to buy his ticket to visit his granddad in Cork last weekend.

His granny had accompanied him on the trip.

“Everybody rushed on to the train and my granny was left standing for three hours because there were another like 30 people standing and a pregnant woman,” he said.

There was so many people there and there were older people than my granny lying on the ground as well.

“I feel there needs to be a different policy and it’s unfair.”

Zach said his granny’s back ‘really ached’ after the trip, adding, “I feel she should get an apology.

“We did raise it with the staff before we got on the train and we said could she get a ticket and the man said he’d look for one.

I told the man I paid for a ticket and I’m entitled to one and he said ‘No you didn’t, you paid for a ride on the train’. I paid €34 for that train.

“I thought I was disrespected and I feel that you shouldn’t be charging €34 and not even get a seat.”

Barry Kenny from Irish Rail has apologised for the incident and said the day in question saw a very high demand due to the Bloom festival.

It’s not a case that we’d deliberately oversell a train but at times like this unfortunately it does occur from time to time.

He also added that Zach would get a refund.

However, the 13-year-old said, “A spokesperson from Irish Rail said they’d give me my €34 back but I think they’re just trying to hide the harshness.

“I feel someone needs to stand up and take action for this matter.”


The Dublin teenager has been receiving a lot of support online:

Would you give up your seat? 

The story also highlighted an unedifying side to other commuters on the train. Zach said that nobody offered to give up their seat to his grandmother that day or – from what he could see – to a pregnant woman and other older people left standing.

Would you have given up your seat?

Now we’re not talking about a 20 minute train ride here – but a three hour journey.

Go on, be honest.

Poll Results:

A - Yes (8666)
B - No (993)
C - I don't know (850)

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