Dáil Éireann - Volume 535 - 02 May, 2001

Written Answers - School Transport.

106. Mr. Higgins (Mayo) asked the Minister for Education and Science the number of school buses which Bus Éireann provides to his Department for the primary and post-primary school transport service; the number of such buses in the age categories zero to five years inclusive; six to ten years, inclusive; 11 to 15 years, inclusive; 16 to 20 years, inclusive; 21 to 25 years, inclusive; 26 to 30 years, inclusive; over 30 years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8778/01]

Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): The number of pupils holding Bus Éireann permits for transport under the school transport scheme is in the region of 145,000. This figure fluctuates over the course of the year. These children are transported to primary and post-primary schools, special classes and schools for children with special needs. School buses are utilised as efficiently as possible, meaning most services are co-ordinated to provide separate trips using the same vehicle to post-primary and primary schools, morning and afternoon.

The number of buses engaged to provide school transport services is currently 3,030, of which 698 are Bus Éireann school buses and the [740] balance are provided by private contractors. This figure includes vehicles retained as spare and required for replacement purposes from time to time.

The number of Bus Éireann school buses in each age category specified by the Deputy is as follows:

0 – 5 years

2

6 – 10 years

11

11 – 15 years

107

16 – 20 years

499

21 – 25 years

53

26 – 30 years

26