Prison vans of various sizes are a regular sight on Portlaoise's Main Street
The Irish Prison Service is set to invest heavily in a new fleet of secure vans to transport prisoners.
The service has invited firms to bid for the contract to supply 43 vehicles over the next four years. The service wants to buy 24 two-cell vehicles, 12 six-cell vehicles and seven 12-cell vans.
Most of the new vehicles will be supplied in year one of the contract with 10 two sell and six six-cell vans coming on stream. The 12-cell vehicles will go into service in years four and five.
All the vehicles will have to be able to accommodate four escort prison officers. The diesel engine powered vans must also have a maximum lifetime usage of 200,000 kms.
The invite to tender to supply the vans is €10 million.
Tender documents say that in the event that The Irish Prison Service awards a separate contract for the servicing and maintenance of its fleet, the successful Tenderer may be required to facilitate the servicing, maintenance and repair works under that contract.
It adds that free breakdown assistance should be included for the duration of the warranty period.
The vehicles will be delivered and invoiced to the transport unit at Cloverhill Prison.
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