New high speed trains delayed

New high-speed train carriages for the Dublin-Cork route, originally promised for last December, will not be in use until May and their full implementation will not happen until the end of the year. The new carriages will coincide with the introduction of an hourly service between Dublin and Cork, and were originally meant to be fully implemented by the autumn.

According to the rail passenger's organisation, Platform 11, the delay is due to an industrial relations dispute. Iarnród Éireann want to replace train guards with a new position of train manager and a dispute over this is causing the delay. Iarnród Éireann say that delay is because they are still "testing and commissioning" the new carriages and organising the implementation for the new system with staff.

The first of the carriages was delivered last July as part of a €460 million investment programme, bringing 223 new carriages to Iarnród Éireann's fleet over the next three years. There are 67 express coaches for the Dublin-Cork route, at a cost of €117 million. The new carriages are the first to be bought since the "supertrain" carriages in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Emma Browne