Transport companies in the west coast region have been told they will need to raise their fares or face an investigation by the Department of Transport.
Key points:Transport for Ireland has warned that its fares have not been rising in line with the cost of fuelSource: Trainspotting writer and author David Attenborough, who has written two books about the film, said he believed that a higher fare was needed for the industry to keep goingSource: RTE, “The next train” series, “I want a better life”, aired on Sunday, March 11, 2018, at 8:00pm on RTE.
Transport Minister Leo Varadkar confirmed the Government’s stance at a press conference on Sunday morning, saying that the State would consider an increase in fares if the cost to transport passengers was not increasing.
“There will be a decision made as to whether we go back to the level we were in before, and we will have to make that decision,” he said.
He added that the fare hikes would not affect all transport companies, adding that a “reasonable increase” would be in place if there was no further growth in demand.
“We will have a very reasonable fare increase if there is a growth in the cost and that’s because of the cost increase on fuel and fuel prices, which are not changing,” he added.
Transport companies are currently charging about €1.80 per kilometre on their trains, compared to a price of about €2.50 per kilometres when fuel prices were at their peak.
The price of fuel is not going up.
We will keep raising fares as part of the transition from a low-carbon economy to a high-carbon future.
However, a recent study by the independent think tank, Transport Focus, suggested that the cost for the transport sector in the West Coast region would have to rise from the current level of €1 to at least €2 to keep up with demand.
The price rises have also caused some travel delays, with some trains carrying passengers for several hours on Saturday morning.
The figures suggest that the price of a passenger trip is not increasing enough to cover the cost.
“The transport industry is facing an enormous problem,” Mr Attenham said.
“It is a huge financial challenge and the State has not done anything.
Mr Attenbury said the Government needed to take a more proactive approach, but that it was unlikely to be able to fix the issue with one or two fares. “
The government has not been very clear on what it wants and what it will do.”
Mr Attenbury said the Government needed to take a more proactive approach, but that it was unlikely to be able to fix the issue with one or two fares.
He added: “There are a lot of people who want to be in the game, who want the State to be involved and the Government has not got a clue what it is doing.
Mr Varadar, speaking at the Irish Rail Summit on Sunday afternoon, said the State was committed to making sure the public transport system was in a strong position to cope with climate change.
According to Transport Focus’ latest research, the average household in the region spends about €3,600 per year on public transport, and is likely to spend more over the next 30 years.
There has been a reduction in the number of passengers since the start of the decade, and the number travelling has declined as the cost per kilometer has risen.
At the end of March, the Department was forecasting that the annual cost of transport in the country would rise by 3 per cent over the coming decades.