Monday, 27 February 2012

Michael O'Leary for CIE?

I hate flying Ryanair, I must say. But I can remember the days when you nearly had to take out a mortgage just to fly to London when Aer Lingus had a monopoly on Irish skies.

A few years back, I was in a situation when I had to take the plane every other week, and I was glad of Ryanair back then. If they hadn’t been around I couldn’t have done the amount of necessary commuting I had to do.

So, although Mick O’Leary might be a bit of a bollocks in many respects – albeit a clever and amusing one – he did at least open things up with the business model he copied.

You would wonder if he couldn't have a look at CIE? I mean, how many times have you been standing in the pissings of rain, to be treated to the sight of empty “OUT OF SERVICE” buses cruising blithely by? Can you imagine our Mick allowing a Ryanair plane take to the air empty because the pilot wants to get back to Dublin Airport for his sarnies?

And what about the vexed question of signage? Irish Rail must have spent a lot of taxpayers’ money on their fancy digital signs, which were to inform the public of their train’s arrival. As far as I can see, however, they were never switched on in some stations. Coolmine being one example and Maynooth (see pic) being another.

What is the point of investing in a system such as this if no-one can be arsed to make the things functional in every station? By the same token, I have seen northbound trains with “Bray” scrolled on the front (Bray lies south) and incomprehensible platform-change announcements that leave “the skulls” (Irish Rail staff's affectionate term for their paying customers) scratching said crania.

A lot of things get blamed these days on cutbacks and lack of investment, but this kind of nonsense was a boomtime phenomenon too.

Rather than a question of money, is it simply a matter of not making the effort?

Back to Gombeen Nation main page


John said...

To be fair, GM, in 2009 Duboin bus cut staff by 290 and took 10% of the fleet off the road. I suspect that the fleet reduction is probably higher now. They cited lack of demand
at the time. So much for encouraging the use of public transport. And, it costs me 2.65 each way into the city, so I use the care if I have to go there, plus the smoking on the buses here in Tallaght, yep, happens a lit they go upstairs and light up and not a bother, drivers is to scared to do anything about it.

The Gombeen Man said...

I usually get the train, John. The only thing is, the Maynooth-Dublin commuter line is nowhere near as frequent as the DART, so if you miss your train outside peak hours, you can be waiting God know's how long for the next one. Then it's a bus job.

Thing is, when I was living in Clonsilla/Blanch, you would be forever waiting for the 39 to come along the Clonsilla road since they made their cuts (which they presented as route improvements). It used to be OK before that, but now it is awful.

Plus there are the same problems with anti-social behaviour on the upper decks, particularly at night.

You wonder might there be an argument for employing those heavy-looking lads in the stabproof vests who patrol the trains at night?

John said...

well,GM, about 2 years back they had the police on one of the routes for a week or 2, and funny enough there was no trouble.Well we got rid of the
26 miles of joined up tram track that the English installed, but that is another story. Poor transport infracture is just another sign that we are sinking further into the bog.

Dakota said...

You say Public Transport GM, I like a good laugh :).......where exactly is it? The Public Transport you speak of is a contradition in terms. I have to say, the only public transport I know of, in Ireland, and especially in Dublin, are QUANGOS with inflated egos the size of the national debt. Don't you just love ever increasing taxes?

The Gombeen Man said...

And fares....

Our transport system is still woeful, D. How many capital cities don't have a train to the country's major airport, for instance?