Briefing for National Transport Authority board on Dublin’s November riot and public transport

A public transport briefing in the wake of last year’s rioting in Dublin said the cost of damage to vehicles was likely to be around €5 million and that a rethink of updates for the public during a crisis was needed.

A note prepared for the board of the National Transport Authority (NTA) said travel information had “initially proved difficult” to update as services were diverted or cancelled but improved as time went on.

It also raised questions over whether a crisis management call should have been scheduled earlier on the night of the riots, after a stabbing incident on Parnell Square was seized upon by the far right and fascists to provoke widespread disorder.

The note said: “Should a crisis management call have been called earlier than 10pm?

“At the time it was felt that the operators had enough to deal with and may not have had time for an all-operator meeting.”

In a section entitled “lessons learnt”, the National Transport Authority said work on their mobile app TFI Live was needed to tell customers that information might not always be accurate during a “security event”.

It said a series of “template messages” would be developed for such incidents, which included public disorder, severe weather, or other major unforeseen disruptions.

Details of three of the recommendations were withheld under FOI law on the basis it could risk the safety of gardaí and compromise the NTA’s ability to manage emergency scenarios.

The note also described in detail the scale of destruction with an estimated repair bill of €5 million as three Dublin Bus vehicles were destroyed, one Luas tram severely damaged, and another bus suffered extensive fire damage.