Protest over train announcements
People with visual impairments have come together to protest against what they describe as "persistently poor quality" in the sound quality of announcements on Iarnród Éireann trains.
Next Monday, people with a visual impairments and their supporters, will send hundreds of texts to the company's press officers.
The texts will be sent by the campaigners at 9.30am to voice their anger at what they say is the persistent poor quality or lack of audible announcements on Irish trains.
Supporters are being asked to send their name by text, indicating they support the campaign by those with vision impairment.
A suggested sample text reads: "I am contacting you to highlight the lack of audible announcements on both Dart and intercity rail services. I would like to point out that audible announcements are of a great value to our tourist industry. I would be grateful if you could give me an exact date and time when this problem will be resolved. I would like to hear from you as soon as possible."
Martin O’Sullivan set up the campaign after years of dissatisfaction with the sound quality of Irish Rail’s train announcements.
“We have gotten great support for this so far, with over 600 people promising to send a text on Monday to Irish Rail. It has taken years for the situation to improve so we hope this Monday on July 23rd that the dissatisfaction will be heard loud and clear,” he said.
In a statement, Irish rail said 52 per cent of the Dart fleet had a completely new system installed between 2007 and 2009 and that €120,000 had recently been spent upgrading obsolete functions on non-refurbished trains and that this work was almost complete.
A modern replacement system for the remaining Dart trains has been tendered for and the National Transport Authority has indicated support for the project.
“It is important that any system chosen meets all of the performance criteria expected and this will take time to implement,” the statement added.
A Facebook event called “Blitz Irish Rail with texts calling on them to ensure safe travel for all” has also been set up.