Heisei in Perspective: Efforts to Boost Train Safety Continuing

Society Politics

Tokyo, Feb. 8 (Jiji Press)--A number of fatal train accidents occurred in Japan during the 30-year Heisei era, which started in January 1989, prompting railway operators to introduce new measures to ensure the safety of services.

Helped by such efforts, no accidents resulting in passenger or crew member deaths have happened since 2006.

Still, railway companies have no time to waste in further enhancing steps to protect passengers, in the wake of incidents, including a murder case on a Shinkansen high-speed train.

Financial hurdles facing many small local operators are making it difficult for them to take adequate safety measures.

On the morning of April 25, 2005, a packed seven-car rapid commuter train of West Japan Railway Co. <9021>, or JR West, came off the rails on a curved section of the Fukuchiyama Line in the city of Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture. The first and second cars crashed into a condominium building near the tracks.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press