TERRIFIED Dart passengers were caught up in a knife fight on a packed rail carriage in north Dublin.
Services were suspended for a period on St Patrick's Day as two gangs clashed on a platform at Kilbarrack station, before continuing the violence on a departing train.
During the clashes one of the youths brandished a knife, leading Dart security to call gardai.
The gangs jumped on to the southbound train at Kilbarrack Dart station in north Dublin after an argument broke out between them on the platform.
Families who were on their way into the city centre for St Patrick's Day were shocked and frightened when one youth with a knife threatened other youths.
The commuter service was suspended for 20 minutes as gardai and security staff brought the situation under control. Irish Rail security staff initially tried to deal with the youths, but then had to wait for gardai to arrive before the brawl could be diffused.
An Irish Rail spokesman said: "Two groups of youths on the platform at Kilbarrack station were involved in an altercation, during which one individual produced a knife."
He said one Dart train was delayed "for about 20 minutes" but the service did not have to be completely shut down.
The gangs had been fighting on the platform at Kilbarrack and once the train pulled into the station they launched into one of the carriages.
The spokesperson added: "Passengers were not evacuated from the train. There were passengers on the Dart, but the problem was primarily on the platform."
"We haven't received complaints -- customers appreciated that the security team separated the groups as far as possible and called the gardai to assist promptly."
No one was injured in the brawl. The Irish Rail spokesperson said the individual who produced the knife escaped but is known to gardai.
"Our security staff who were at the station alerted the gardai. The Dart in question arrived at the station, and a number of the youths boarded the Dart, but we arranged to hold the Dart so gardai could deal with the people involved."