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Travelling somewhere? Don't forget, there's a massive rail strike...

There are no trains. And there aren’t many extra bus services either — but for what it’s worth, here are the arrangements…

Image: Shutterstock

Updated 7am 

PLANNING A JOURNEY? Perhaps for the clash of Mayo and Kerry at Croke Park, the trad festival taking place in Bantry, the Doolin Craft Beer Festival, or just home to see your mammy?

Well, you’ll hardly have escaped the fact that there’s a huge rail strike taking place over the next two days.

Some 90,000 people are set to be affected — including thousands of GAA fans set to flock to Croker for the All Ireland Semi Final.

Pending a last-ditch solution to the row, which centres on Irish Rail’s plans to unilaterally implement a cost-saving plan which includes cuts to basic pay of between 1.7 and 5 per cent, the two-day strike looks set to go ahead this morning.

To be clear — that means there will be no services whatsoever today or on Monday. 

Intercity, DART and Commuter services are all affected.

So… What are the alternatives?

Well, there’s no extra capacity being put on at Bus Éireann — services there are running as normal today and on Monday.

A spokesperson for the NBRU told TheJournal.ie that management at the company had made no approach to the union about putting on extra services.

Dublin Bus and Luas services in the capital will also be operating as normal.

You might find a seat on a private bus operator — according to Transport for Ireland, which is run by the National Transport Authority, 20 private bus and coach companies have said they’ll be offering extra capacity on their regular scheduled journeys.

To explore that option, your best move is to head to the Transport for Ireland site, which has a list of the companies… 

[Transport for Ireland]

There has also been criticism of the unions for deciding to strike on the day of the All Ireland Semi Final. A further three days of action planned for September will take in both the All Ireland Hurling final and Football Final.

However the NBRU’s General Secretary Dermot O’Leary has pointed out that it was the company which had chosen the date to implement the cuts and that is why the work stoppages are taking place that day.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie, O’Leary said the fact that Irish Rail boss David Franks had gone on holiday to Mauritius as planned in advance of the scheduled strike signaled that the company wasn’t serious about trying to reach a solution ahead of today’s action.

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Irish Rail confirmed on Thursday that Franks was cutting his holiday short, and is due back at the office tomorrow — but O’Leary said the industrial action had been well flagged.

“This guy has been known to micromanage everything including industrial relation,” O’Leary said.

Our members are quite annoyed at the fact that he took himself off with this about to happen.

In a statement yesterday evening he added:

It is regrettable that the impact of the company’s decision to cut our members wages will be widely felt by those who use the train as a mode of transport, in making their decision the company, supported it would appear by the Minister, have chosen to ignore the concerns of staff in relation to the future of the railway.

In a statement, Irish Rail insisted that it had “no option” but to implement the cost-cutting measures, while spokesman Barry Kenny said the two day action would cost the already struggling company about €2 million.

Further disruption is threatened on the following dates:

-         Sunday 7 September

-         Monday 8 September

-         Sunday 21 September

Read: Iarnród Éireann boss is set to return from Mauritius holiday ahead of strike action

Read: Strike by Irish Rail workers to hit All-Ireland semi and finals

About the author:

Daragh Brophy

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