Iarnrod Eireann to contact hunts about trespass
02 March 2007
The Chief Executive of Iarnrod Eireann has announced that the company's district managers have been asked to contact their local hunts to warn them that any hunters caught trespassing on to tracks will be prosecuted.
In a letter to an ICABS Supporter in February, the national rail company's CEO, Richard Fearn, wrote: "Noting your concerns that, in particular, mounted foxhunters have trespassed on the railway lately, I have asked my district managers to contact their local hunts directly and to advise them of the seriousness of acts of trespass on the railway."
He also stressed that Iarnrod Eireann "will, and has, prosecuted offenders who commit acts of trespass on the railway".
"Trespass on an operational railway can endanger the lives of both the trespassers and rail users and is considered, both by Iarnrod Eireann and the Courts, as most serious," he added.
ICABS is very pleased with this response. Last year, the company promised to contact a single hunt after one of its members reportedly trespassed on to a track as a train approached. This latest announcement that district managers are to actively address the problem on a national scale, however, is a major step further.
ICABS has today sent Iarnrod Eireann a complete list of Ireland's registered hunting groups along with contact names, addresses and phone numbers.
We have assured the company that our efforts to convince the government to replace animal hunting with drag hunting is ongoing. "Drag hunting not only eliminates the cruelty of hunting but also ensures that the route taken by hunters avoids prohibited land, public roads and railway lines," we stated.
If you witness a hunt trespassing on rail lines, urgently contact Iarnrod Eireann. Try to get photos or video footage as these may prove vital in securing a successful prosecution. After alerting Iarnrod Eireann, please notify ICABS. Thank you.