21 DECEMBER 2004
In 2004 my mother asked me to bring her on the new LUAS (tram) service. We went on the “red line” to the “Square” in Tallaght and after some Christmas shopping we returned to Dublin city centre. On our way back a white van driver decided to cut across the tracks without any warning … this photograph shows the results.
What was really funny was that within ten minutes of the accident an old woman living locally arrived with tea for everyone on the tram … she must have a very well organised emergency plan in place.
I forget to mention that no one was injured but the van driver was more than a bit upset as he was delivering the van from the dealer to a customer … it must have been a used van as the number plate indicated that it was registered in 2001.
Before the Luas was launched a Safety Awareness Day was held in Dublin City Centre. Also thousands of reflective armbands were distributed to pedestrians and cyclists, in order to ensure their visibility for tram drivers. This policy seems to have worked as the Luas has been described as being “one of the safest transport systems in the world”. Both trams and stops are monitored using CCTV 24 hours a day from the central control room, located in the Red Cow Depot. The first fatality following an accident on the Luas was in February 2008, after a man was struck by a tram in Tallaght. Apart from this there have been many occurrences of cars striking trams, mainly caused by motorists breaking red lights. On the 16th of September 2009, a Luas crashed into a Dublin Bus on the O’Connell Street-Abbey Street Junction.