Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Questions (503, 504, 505)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

517 Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his views on the high level of violent incidents at recent large music events; if he has raised this issue with An Garda Síochána; if he is reviewing the arrangements for future events of this kind; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34571/12]

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Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

518 Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if An Garda Síochána was fully consulted and approved of security arrangements at a recent large music event; and if the promoter was interviewed by the Garda following same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34572/12]

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Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

520 Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his views on the security arrangements that are currently in place on public transport services when large music, sporting or other events are taking place in Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34574/12]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice and Equality)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 517, 518 and 520 together.

I want to assure the Deputy that I share the widespread public concern at the disturbing incidents at the recent Phoenix Park concert. Since there have been relatively trouble free events held at that venue in the past, it therefore important to scrutinise whether there were particular circumstances surrounding this concert which may have given rise to difficulties.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that in preparing for the concerts which took place over the weekend of 5 to 8 July, a series of planning meetings took place between a range of stakeholders, including An Garda Síochána and the concert organisers from early in 2012. The meetings involved site inspections, major emergency planning, training and other issues. A full operational policing plan and event management plans were prepared by An Garda Síochána and the organisers. Traffic management plans were also prepared for each event, details of which were circulated for the information of all road users.

An Garda Síochána is reviewing what happened at the concerts, including the implementation of the plans which had been in place. An initial meeting was held with the concert organisers last week and it was agreed that both organisations will carry out a more in depth review regarding all aspects of the event. The fact is that the arrangements which were in place on the Saturday night did not prevent the type of behaviour which took place.

The Garda Commissioner has undertaken to let me have a report following that review and I can assure the Deputy that I am determined any lessons will be taken fully into account in future planning and risk management of such events.

I am further informed by my colleague, the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport that the Railway Procurement Agency, Dublin Bus, Iarnród Éireann, Bus Éireann and Veolia regularly liaise with An Garda Síochána in relation to transport planning and associated security issues for all major upcoming events. In addition, the companies divert resources including private security to supplement normal staffing levels as appropriate.