Japanese Rail Line Fully Reopens after Typhoon Damage

Society Lifestyle

Ueda, Nagano Pref., March 28 (Jiji Press)--A rail line in central Japan fully reopened on Sunday, following a shutdown after an iconic red bridge partially collapsed due to Typhoon Hagibis in 2019.

About 100 local residents and railway fans welcomed the day's first train by waving or taking photos as it crossed the bridge over the Chikuma River in Ueda, Nagano Prefecture.

Teruko Tanaka, a 73-year-old woman who often visited the river during her childhood days, said, "The red bridge is a place of memory." Progress in reconstruction "brings hope to everyone," she said.

The bridge was built in 1924 on the 11.6-kilometer Bessho Line of Uedadentetsu Co. In October 2019, a 44-meter portion of the 224-meter bridge fell after the river swelled due to torrential rain from the typhoon.

Residents had submitted about 54,000 signatures to the Ueda city government calling for an early restoration of the Bessho Line. Donations had totaled nearly 100 million yen as of the end of February.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press