Striking bus drivers end timetable dispute

Striking Dublin Bus drivers tonight agreed to go back to work ending a bitter row over new timetables and rotas as well as three days of travel misery for commuters.

The trade unions, which had not sanctioned the wildcat walkout, have agreed to get the drivers back on duty with senior officials planning further talks on the revised schedules.

It is estimated the strike cost the company €400,000, on top of the €31m losses it expects this year.

Dublin Bus spokeswoman Cliona Ní Fhatharta said talks will be organised at a local level as both sides work to avoid a repeat of the dispute.

The three-day row spread across depots in the north of the city with Dublin Bus management blaming drivers for intimidating those who wanted to work.

They also claimed buses had been attacked.

“Two buses were stoned at Phibsborough, although the windows didn’t actually shatter,” Ms Ní Fhatharta said.

“There was also intimidation of drivers across the city when drivers from Harristown went to each of our other depots and tried to escalate the unofficial industrial action.

“We’ve also had a female driver who was so intimidated that she had to return back to her garage manager.”

The row initially centred on Harristown depot near Dublin Airport after one driver was suspended for refusing to work the new staff rota on Sunday. It spread to Clontarf on Monday, as unofficial pickets formed and drivers walked out in support, creating a public transport shutdown in the north of the city.

Dublin Bus said buses from Conynham Road and Summerhill depots – which include services to Ballyfermot and Clondalkin on the southside – were also affected as the row deepened.

Management said staff involved in a third day of unofficial action had gone to bus depots throughout the city in a bid to extend the dispute.

Fine Gael transport spokesman Fergus O’Dowd called for a no-strike clause at Dublin Bus.

The TD also claimed a lack of competition on routes compounded problems caused by the strike.

“The lack of a real alternative from private sector operators in Dublin meant that passengers and commuters had to resort to their cars,” Mr O’Dowd said.

“Large areas of the city still do not have adequate bus services, and some have no service at all. Our proposals would allow operators, from both the private and public sector, to tender for new and existing routes and services.

“This would produce more routes and more buses, when and where they are needed.”

More on this topic

24-hour bus services to operate in Dublin24-hour bus services to operate in Dublin

New Dublin Bus route begins todayNew Dublin Bus route begins today

UCD students' union appeals to Dublin Bus drivers to stop at Belfield UCD students' union appeals to Dublin Bus drivers to stop at Belfield

Nine Dublin Bus routes switching to Go-Ahead from todayNine Dublin Bus routes switching to Go-Ahead from today


More in this Section

Fine Gael sees popularity boost in latest pollFine Gael sees popularity boost in latest poll

Dooley apologises as footage emerges of him with Collins in Dáil ahead of voteDooley apologises as footage emerges of him with Collins in Dáil ahead of vote

President Higgins and Defence Minister evacuated from hotel in Lebanese capitalPresident Higgins and Defence Minister evacuated from hotel in Lebanese capital

Gardaí appeal for help in search for missing man in GalwayGardaí appeal for help in search for missing man in Galway


Lifestyle

'When a role became available in The River Lee following the refurbishment, I jumped at the chance!'You've Been Served: Sinead McDonald of The River Lee on life as a Brand Manager

It’s the personal stories from Bruce Springsteen that turn his new ‘Western Stars’ documentary into something special, the director tells Esther McCarthy.Bruce Springsteen's Western Stars documentary more than just a music film

Apart from the several variations in its spelling in Irish and English, Inishtubbrid, Co Clare is also recognised by three other names: Wall’s Island; O’Grady’s Island and Inishtubber which surely puts it up there as the island with most names — not counting say Inisvickillane, Co Kerry which has about 33 variations to that spelling.The Islands of Ireland: In search of tranquility

More and more communities and volunteers are taking on environmental tasks around the country. In Clonmel, Co Tipperary, for example, people have united to get rid of Himalayan balsam, an invasive plant, from the banks of the River Suir.‘Bashing’ invasive plants

More From The Irish Examiner