Major coach operator accused of having ‘defective and dangerous’ vehicles, WRC hears

Whistleblower claims Citi Bus Ltd, which trades as Dublin Coach, penalised him for raising concerns

The whistleblower's lawyer said his client’s allegations against Citi Bus Ltd, trading as Dublin Coach, were 'very serious' and a matter of 'grave public importance'. Photograph: iStock

A major private coach operator has been accused of having “defective and dangerous public vehicles” by a lawyer acting for a whistleblower who claims he was penalised for raising his concerns.

Urging a Workplace Relations Commission adjudicator to press on and hear his client’s case on Tuesday morning, the lawyer said his client’s allegations against Citi Bus Ltd, trading as Dublin Coach, were “very serious” and a matter of “grave public importance”.

The WRC was told the worker had recovered photos and video footage from a broken mobile phone pertaining to alleged defects with vehicles.

Nico Holloway has brought complaints under the Protected Disclosures Act 2014, the Unfair Dismissals Act 1977 and the Employment Equality Act 1998 the firm. Four further unspecified statutory complaints were also referred in oral legal submissions to the Workplace Relations Commission on Tuesday.


Des Ryan BL, appearing for the respondent, applied for an adjournment on the basis that the complainant side had submitted a booklet of evidence on Monday afternoon.

He said it was information the complainant “clearly thinks important – video footage, photographs and 13 so-called defect notifications in respect of vehicles”.

“We respectfully say we would be seriously prejudiced if the hearing proceeds today, because we need more time to take instructions,” Mr Ryan said.

The tribunal heard Mr Holloway’s job with the company ended on January 5th 2024 – Mr Ryan stating that it was to the employment tribunal’s credit that the case had been called on so quickly and that Mr Holloway would be less prejudiced by an adjournment than his client would be by the case going ahead immediately.

Mr Holloway’s solicitor, Setanta Landers of Setanta Solicitors, said the material he had submitted to the tribunal this week was “consistent” with his client’s claim and that there were no new allegations being made.

“They haven’t even attempted to put in submissions. It would be one thing to come to the WRC and say we’ve prepared submissions as best we could ... but they’ve not engaged with that in any shape or form,” Mr Landers added.

“These are very serious allegations of defective and dangerous public vehicles. That is a matter of grave public importance,” he said.

Adjudicator David James Murphy gave the complainant a week to make any further submissions and a further three weeks for the company to make replying submissions to those before adjourning the matter pending the fixing of a new date by the WRC’s schedulers.