Tohoku Shinkansen Line to Reopen on All Sections April 14


Tokyo, April 5 (Jiji Press)--East Japan Railway Co. <9020>, or JR East, said Tuesday that it will resume services on all sections of its Tohoku Shinkansen bullet train line on April 14.

The line is currently closed between Fukushima Station in Fukushima Prefecture and Sendai Station in neighboring Miyagi Prefecture due to damage from last month's strong earthquake that mainly hit the Tohoku northeastern Japan region, including the two prefectures.

Even after the reopening of all sections, however, the number of services will be around 80-90 pct of that of full operations as trains must slow down between Koriyama Station in Fukushima and Ichinoseki Station in Iwate Prefecture, north of Miyagi, JR East President Yuji Fukasawa said at a press conference.

The company is expected to release a detailed timetable soon. Services are projected to fully return to normal during or after the Golden Week holiday period between late this month and early May, according to the railway operator.

The March 16 quake led to the derailment of 16 of the 17 cars of the Yamabiko No. 223 train, which was traveling between Fukushima Station and Shiroishizao Station in Miyagi on the Shinkansen line at the time. The temblor also caused damage to around 1,000 areas in Tohoku Shinkansen facilities, including utility poles and elevated tracks. Recovery work is expected to cost around 15 billion yen to 20 billion yen.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press