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1994: Iarnród Éireann

Iarnród Éireann (; in English Irish Rail), is the national passenger railway system in Ireland. Established on 1 February 1987, it is a subsidiary of Córas Iompair Éireann. It runs all internal intercity, suburban and commuter railway services in the Republic of Ireland and it operates the Enterprise service between Dublin and Belfast jointly with Northern Ireland Railways. In addition to Iarnród Éireann and Northern Ireland Railways, Bord na Móna operates a 3ft-gauge large industrial railway (the largest railway system in Ireland, but it does not carry passengers). See also rail transport in Ireland.

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1987: "The Four Rails" of Irish Rail

At the time of its establishment Iarnród Éireann referred to itself as Irish Rail, and introduced the four rails IR logo; however, the initials IR were often defaced as IRA on signage. In 1994, the company brought the Irish form of its name and related initials to the fore, and these remain the corporate branding today. The Irish word iarnród translates literally into English as iron road, or formally railway.

Iarnrod Eireann's services are divided under two major brands - the InterCity sector which operates long-distance routes (including the "Enterprise" service run in conjunction with Northern Ireland Railways), and DART/Commuter sector which operates routes in the greater Dublin area and Leinster. A separate timetable is published for each sector annually.

Dublin is a large interchange in Ireland's railway system. The three main intercity stations are Connolly Station, Heuston Station, and Pearse Station; Intercity services radiate to/from Cork, Limerick, Tralee, Galway, Waterford, Rosslare Europort, Sligo, Westport and Ballina. Additional regional services run Cork - Tralee and Limerick - Rosslare Europort.

Iarnród Éireann No. 215 at Grand Canal Dock DART station, 2001
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Iarnród Éireann No. 215 at Grand Canal Dock DART station, 2001

Commuter services are also mainly radial to/from Dublin: Northern (Dundalk), Western (Maynooth/Longford), South Western (Kildare) and South Eastern (Arklow). Additional commuter services run Ennis - Limerick, Tralee - Cork and Cóbh - Cork. The north-south route is also host to DART, Ireland's only electrified heavy rail service.

Quality of service varies from route to route. The Enterprise is well regarded, despite problems with punctuality. There have been ongoing problems with excess power drain on the locomotives, with one or two locomotives overheating and bursting into flames while in service. Breakdowns are a regular occurance as a result. The Cork - Dublin route, also quite well regarded, was the "premier line" of the Great Southern and Western Railway, one of the biggest pre-Córas Iompair Éireann operators. Journey time and rolling stock are quite good on this route.

See also

External link


Córas Iompair Éireann Missing image
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CIE Group

Bus Éireann - Irish Bus | Dublin Bus - Bus Átha Cliath | Iarnród Éireann - Irish Rail

fr:Iarnród Éireann
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