Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport and Communications, Martin Kenny TD, has called on government to outline what measures have been put in place to treat roads used as part of Local Link routes.
His comments come as a number of Local Link and Rural Link operators notified customers of delays, disruptions and cancellations due to ice and frost today.
Teachta Kenny said:
“As the ice and frost made its presence felt over the past few days, there have been significant disruption to Local Link and Rural Link services across the country, but particularly across the northwest.
“It is the Department of Local Government and each Local Authority are responsible for ensuring roads being served by NTA vehicles are cleared and useable, however it is the experience of many operators in rural Ireland that this simply is not happening.
“The Department is not providing Local Authorities with enough funding to carry out this work, nor are they insisting on the inclusion of roads used by Local Link in any weather action plans.
“When I raised this with the Minister last year, he passed the blame to the local authorities and washed his hands of any responsibility. This is simply not good enough for commuters and hybrid workers in rural areas who depend on Local Link services to get to their destination.
“Government has time to plan for frost and ice, it has long been part of our weather cycles.
“They are failing to prepare roads that are required to be useable by NTA vehicles, and those suffering most from the resulting disruptions are passengers and Local Link operators.”