Commuters frustrated due to overcrowded train

There was a larger number of passengers than usual on the 7.55am service from Whiteabbey.
There was a larger number of passengers than usual on the 7.55am service from Whiteabbey.

Translink is developing a business case for new trains which would provide extra capacity after complaints were made about a service this week.

Local residents took to social media to voice their concerns about the limited capacity available on the 7.55am service from Whiteabbey on Monday, April 9.

Commenting on Twitter, one person said: “Waiting at Whiteabbey on the 7.55am and passengers couldn’t get on due to overcrowded three-carriage train! What’s going on?”

Directing their tweet to Translink, another person said: “Any reason for small train 7.55am Whiteabbey? This is very frustrating when you are left on the platform! I know the next one is expected at 8.04am, but when you start at a certain time, this isn’t good enough.”

Responding to a press query from the Times about the issue, a Translink spokesperson said: “We experienced growth of 5.5 per cent across NI Railways services in 2017, with over 15 million passenger journeys, the highest in NI Railways 50 years history.

“We recognise the need for additional capacity on many of our routes.”

The spokesperson added: “We are developing a business case for new trains which would provide extra capacity for our passengers.

“During the morning and evening peaks, all available trains are in use, however due to operational reasons on Monday morning last involving an earlier train, there was a larger number of passengers than usual on the 7.55am service from Whiteabbey.”