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Eamonn Farrell/
Irish Rail

Spike in 'menacing' anti-social behaviour on Irish trains prompts calls for transport police

There was a 14% increase in anti-social incidents on the Iarnród Éireann network in 2018.

A FIANNA FÁIL TD is calling for a “zero-tolerance” approach in response to rising levels of anti-social behaviour on Irish trains. 

New figures show that there have been 785 incidents of anti-social behaviour on Irish trains in 2019 – an increase from 572 this time last year. 

The figures, revealed by the Minister for Transport Shane Ross in response to a parliamentary question by Fianna Fáil’s Jim O’Callaghan, show that in 2018 there were 789 reported incidents of anti-social behaviour – a 14% increase from 2017. 

Fianna Faíl’s Dublin spokesperson John Lahart, who has long been outspoken on the issue, warned that the number of incidents were “escalating”.

“This is just going on and on and is putting people off taking public transport, especially at night,” Lahart said. 

“There is a menacing, low-grade anti-social behaviour,” he said, which makes public transport unattractive. 

The party is calling for the establishment of a dedicated transport police unit to combat anti-social behaviour. 

Lahart said the idea had been “fobbed off”, despite the evidence that incidents are increasing. 

“A zero-tolerance approach must be taken to target the culprits of anti-social behaviour and deter these incidents,” he said. 

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