Garda chief confirms Stepaside station ‘won’t be open 24/7’

by Gary Ibbotson
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Garda Commissioner, Drew Harris has confirmed that the soon-to-be-opened Stepaside Garda Station will not be open to the public 24/7.

Speaking at an Oireachtas Justice Committee, Commissioner Harris said that the station will be “operational” around the clock, as gardai from the roads policing unit will be using it as a hub.

However, “the front desk is not going to be open 24/7,” he said.

Commissioner Harris was asked to comment on the matter after confusion had arisen on the station’s proposed opening hours.

Earlier this month, Cllr Michael Fleming (Ind) received a letter from An Garda Siochana, saying that the station would not be operational 24-hours-a-day, with Minister for Transport Shane Ross originally refuting the claim.

Last week, Minister Ross said: “I have received good news from Garda Commissioner Drew Harris. He informed me that gardai based in Stepaside will be operating 24/7, once the station is reopened.”

Commissioner Harris was pressed on the issue by Fianna Fail TD Jack Chambers, who said there was a “local turf war” going on about the opening hours of the station.

Commissioner Harris said: “I’ve only provided one direction, and that is that it should be staffed 24/7,” and he expected that roads policing vehicles would be “going back and forward”.

He said the opening hours are a matter for local management to decide upon.

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