Red Line Luas users are still subjected to frequent anti-social incidents, despite additional security and Gardaí patrols.
Though that particular Luas line has become infamous in recent years, the frequency with which incidents take place (of which only a fraction are actually reported) is startling.
Despite regular checks by ticket-inspectors and STT Luas Rail Security officers, the trouble-makers, all of varying ages, continue to wreak havoc upon commuters.
In fact, Luas officials have complained of an increase in the amount of threatening behaviour they have to deal with, as well as a rise in the levels of verbal and physical abuse directed towards them.
Worryingly, racial abuse is a becoming a common occurrence, with slurs directed at both members of the public and Luas employees.
One Dublin-born ticket-inspector, who has worked on both the Green and Red routes and asked not to be named, stated that there was simply “no comparing” the two rail-lines as regards the behaviour of their patrons.
“A lot of them [anti-social Luas-users] have nowhere else to go, and just ride up and down all day making a nuisance of themselves”, stated the Transdev employee, who pin-pointed the inner-city section of the Red Line between Rialto and Connolly as the source of most complaints.
Although an increase in security presence was made in the wake of South Dublin Central TD Catherine Bynre’s complaints of “inadequate security” early last year, there has been no noticeable improvement, with around 25 incidents being reported to Gardaí every week.
Transdev has stated that the safety and well-being of their customers is of paramount importance as they strive to deliver “an environment for Luas customers that is as free as possible from anti -social behaviour, low-level crime and fear of crime”.
“Anti -social behaviour is rife in society generally and unfortunately Luas is not immune to the challenge which such behaviour throws up”, stated the company.
Combined, the Red and Green lines transported nearly 30 million people in 2012, an increase of 6% from 2011. However, public order offences on the trams also rose, this time by 11%. Nevertheless, the Luas still continues to provide a reliable, affordable and (for the most part) safe method of transport for its customers.