Written Answers. - Rail Services.

Joe Higgins

Question:

289 Mr. J. Higgins asked the Minister for Transport if he will intervene to solve the problem of severe overcrowding on the 17.44 train service from Connolly Station to Maynooth by taking steps to ensure that extra trains are put on at rush hour and by ensuring that each train has a sufficient number of carriages; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19224/03]

The day-to-day operation of rail services is a matter for Irish Rail. However, I am informed by the company that, at present, all its available carriages are allocated. The 5.44 p.m. train service from Connolly to Maynooth has capacity for 600 customers and this is being fully utilised.

As part of its overall capital investment programme, Irish Rail is currently in the process of commissioning 76 new diesel railcars for the greater Dublin area, some of these will be introduced into service on the Dublin-Maynooth route over the coming months and this will increase capacity by 26% in the peak hour.