Japan Railway & Transport Review No. 5 (pp.38–43)

January – April 1995

2 January Eurotunnel began 24-h operation of tourist shuttles, with hourly service reduced to twohourly between 23.00 and 07.00
Orly Airport, Paris opened to KLM and Air Lauda flights. Government, hoping to strengthen own airline companies tried to delay use claiming that state-controlled Air France needed time to restructure and reduce losses
3 January Long-distance bus with 70 passengers fell from bridge into valley in mountainous area of Northern Luzon, Philippines, killing 35 and injuring 32, some seriously
Congestion at train stations and airport terminals in and out Tokyo reached peak as people headed home at end of New Year holidays. 41,600 people arrived at Narita airport, roughly 60% more than normal. Bullet trains also above full capacity
5 January Two South Korean air force fighter-trainers, T59 Hawks, collided in mid-air during training in Ho-tong, eastern South Kyongsang Province, South Korea, and crashed, killing all four pilots
Sendai Kurihara Electric Railway Co. of Miyagi Prefecture to renew survival by renaming itself Kurihara Denen (pastoral) Railway. Diesel engine cars to replace present electric railway cars to reduce cost of overhead-power maintenance
6 January Air France employees signed up for innovative scheme in which salaries reduced in return for shares in loss-making, state-owned airline. French flag-carrier suffered loss of Ffr8.5 billion ($1.56 billion) in 1993 and Ffr2.6 billion in first half of 1994
11 January Domestic DC-9 airliner of Inter- Continental Airline of Colombia, bound from Santa Fe de Bogota for Cartagena, lost control before landing and crashed into swamp. Fifty-two of 53 passengers and crew killed, with only 9-year-old girl surviving. Terrorist bomb suspected
13 January Two passenger trains packed to capacity collided head-on in northern Dinajipur, Bangladesh, killing more than 100
14 January 39 people dead and 100 injured in Bangladesh rail accident at Hili railroad station in Dinajpur district, 270 km north of Dhaka. Simanta Express packed with about 1,000 passengers on run from northern town of Parbapur collided with stationary local train
17 January Earthquake of Richter magnitude 7.2 hit Kobe, Japan, and neighbouring areas at 5:40 am. Bridges and bridge girders over JR lines, including shinkansen, private railway lines and roads collapsed. Railway lines and roads seriously damaged. One month after disaster, 5,738 persons listed dead, two missing, and 35,626 injured. Completely or partially destroyed houses totalled 159,544. Total debris estimated at 11 million tonnes. Worst disaster in post-war Japan. Sanyo Shinkansen service between Shin-Osaka and Himeji suspended until 7 April
According to new study, air accidents worldwide killed 1,385 in 1994, increase of 25% over 1993. Human error and bad weather top causes
20 January Twelve people suffered injuries when Singapore Airlines jet en route to Fukuoka hit turbulence over southern Japan
21 January World's largest passenger ship, 77,000-tonne Sun Princess launched by Italy's staterun ship-building company at total construction cost of $300 million. 261-m length can accommodate 2,000 passengers
26 January Sixteen-seater microbus for kindergartners crashed into 4- carriage train at crossing on JR Ibusuki-Makurazaki line in Kagoshima Prefecture. Two children killed and 12 others injured, some seriously
Manned ML-002 linear car marked 411 km/h at Miyazaki Experimental Center of JR Integrated Research Institute, breaking 400.8 km/h recorded by MLU-00 in April 1987
30 January Trains began running again between Suma and Kobe stations on JR West, Sanyo line, 13 days after devastating Kobe quake
31 January JR West and JR Central abandon hope of listing shares on stock market in fiscal 1995 because Kobe quake ruined possibility of meeting requirements
4 February Dawn fire at hotel in Hamilton, New Zealand, killed 5 persons
8 February Railway service suspended since May 1992 due to civil war, resumed, following road service, in Sarajevo, Bosnia- Herzegovina. International Red Cross presented large truck with railway track wheels, and moved two passenger carriages over 6 km
Earthquake with magnitude of 6.4 shook central Colombia. 27 persons confirmed dead and about 220 injured. Earlier earthquake in January killed 7
JR West resumed service on JR Tokaido line between Ashiya, Hyogo Prefecture and Sumiyoshi station in Kobe for first time since Kobe earthquake
9 February JAL and ANA ranked fifth and seventh by Sagard Survey in New York for service. Leading US airlines not listed among top 10 airlines: (1) Singapore Airlines, (2) SwissAir, (3) Cathay Pacific (Hong Kong), (4) Midwest Air (US), (5) JAL, (6) QANTAS (Australia), (7) ANA, (8) Virgin Atlantic (UK), (9) Lufthansa (Germany) and KLM (Holland)
13 February Double-engined small sightseeing plane, Piper PA31, crashed due to engine trouble in Grand Canyon, Arizona, with 10 passengers and crew. Eight killed and two others seriously injured
Japan and China agreed to expand airline services of China Northwestern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Japan Air System and Nippon Air Cargo Airlines between two countries
16 February 30 days after Kobe earthquake, subway trains ran entire length of 23-km municipal line in Kobe
18 February Large bus with 45 passengers fell into deep ravine in Wudanshan in northern Hubei Province, China. Twenty-two killed
21 February US1A rescue seaplane of Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force overturned in sea and seriously damaged as failed on landing. One crew member saved, but 11 others killed
24 February JR West started selling “Gran Via Cards” as credit cards for JR group hotels, offering privileges to holders, including 10%-20% discount
Ferry traffic across English Channel severely disrupted by striking French sailors angry because British ferry company hired Polish crew
25 February Two bombs planted in train with Indian Army soldiers aboard exploded in northern Assam, killing at least 25 and injuring 32
Passenger ferry ran aground near Ako Port off Miyake island. 205 passengers of 3,708-ton Strelitzia Maru rescued by local fishermen
27 February JR Shikoku to suffer pre-tax losses of more than ¥1 billion in fiscal 1994 largely because of heavy damage from massive Kobe quake. Mr Hiroatsu Ito, president, reported company's first loss since established by privatization in 1987
28 February Japanese and French authorities agreed to add one weekly jumbo-jet flight on international routes between Tokyo and Paris, and Tokyo and Papeete, Tahiti
5 March Mysterious odor of probable chemical origin filled late-night train bound for Uraga on Miura Peninsula in Kanagawa Prefecture. 11 passengers rushed to hospital with eye irritation, headaches and sore throats
6 March JR Freight introduced car rack system for carrying eight large cars or four 5-tonne (12 ft) containers. Revolutionary system expected to greatly improve economic efficiency of train operations, permitting effective utilization of up and down runs
12 March Tanker collided with fullyloaded bus and both burned in southern Tamil Nadu. Following bus and trailer enveloped in flames, killing more than 120 persons
Gun fire hit jet carrying UN special envoy Yusashi Akashi as landing at Sarajevo airport. No one reported injured
15 March Anti-submarine patrol helicopter, SH60, from US aircraft carrier, Independence, with home port in Japan crashed into sea off Nojimazaki, Chiba Prefecture. Pilot and crewman saved by US rescue helicopter, but two other crew missing
16 March Sounzan cable cars on Mt. Hakone hot-spring resort, (operated by Hakone Tozan Railway) replaced by two trains of two Swiss-made cars doubling capacity to 250 persons
17 March Bus loaded to capacity fell from cliff near Mexico City, killing 29 and injuring 36
19 March Train schedules revised for Sapporo area together with partial completion of doubletracking work on Chitose line (Sapporo-Numanohata). New station opened at Hoshimi
20 March Sarin nerve gas sprayed on Hibiya, Chiyoda and Marunouchi Eidan subway trains in Tokyo during rush hour. Eleven killed and more than 5000 hospitalized
21 March French government announced plans to build lightrail pontoon link to Mont-Saint- Michel, in multimillion dollar face-lift to Breton landmark. France's most-visited tourist site increasingly threatened with becoming part of mainland in recent years
22 March Coalition of people whose relatives killed in China Airlines crash at Nagoya Airport last 26 April submitted petition of more than 150,000 signatures to Transport Ministry Aircraft Investigation Committee
28 March France faced transport chaos as striking workers forced main domestic airline, Air Inter, to cancel third of flights. Rail workers and Paris transport authority, RATP, also joined strike
29 March European Commission gave Greece go-ahead to build new international airport for Athens
31 March Airbus A300 of Rumanian state-run Tarom Airline, bound for Brussels, crashed and burned shortly after take-off, killing all 59 passengers and crew
9 April Earthquake-disrupted services on all shinkansen lines in Western Japan returned to normal
15 April Express train plowed into crowded bus in Nile Delta north of Cairo, Egypt, killing 42 people and injuring 45 others
19 April State-owned Air France announced sharp fall in losses for 1994, reporting net deficit of Ffr2.36 bn ($490.1 m) compared with losses of Ffr8.48 bn in 1993
22 April More than 1,000 people rescued when 8,000-ton Tallink car ferry travelling from Finland to Estonia ran aground off island of Suomenlinna, near Helsinki
27 April Proposed T$442-bn ($17.4 bn) high-speed rail project to link Taipei and Kaohsiung revived following 2 years in limbo after funding rejected by Taiwan legislature in 1993

Photos: JR Revolutionary Car Rack/Container System
Table: Financial Results of JR Companies

JR East Unveils Two New Shinkansen Stock

Series E2 Hokuriku Shinkansen Trainset

The Series E2 trainset will carry 630 passengers to the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics on the Hokuriku Shinkansen. The aluminium-alloy body shell has reduced the axle load to 13 tonnes to facilitate climbing grades. They can run on 50 or 60 Hz by using VVVF control and will be the first shinkansen able to run north and west of Tokyo.

Photo: (JR East)
Photo: Green (First Class) Car
(JR East)

Series E3 Akita Mini-shinkansen Trainset

The series E3 is a mini-shinkansen trainset for direct high-speed services between Tokyo and Akita, on the Sea of Japan coast. This is the second mini-shinkansen after the Service 400 to Yamagata.
The Series E3 will run on the Tazawako line and on lines which are being converted from 1067-mm gauge to 1435-mm gauge by March 1997.

Photo: (JR East)
Photo: Green (First Class) Car
(JR East)

Aftermath of Hanshin (Kobe-Osaka) Earthquake

Photo: Narrow-gauge Tokaido Line near Rokkomichi in Kobe (Transportation News)
Photo: Collapsed Sanyo Shinkansen Viaduct (Transportation News)
Photo: JR West Rokkomichi Station (Transportation News)

Reconstruction Getting Underway

Photo: Strengthening RC Pillar of Shinkansen Viaduct with Steel Sheathing (Transportation News)
Photo: Replacing RC Foundation of JR West Ashiya Station (Transportation News)
Photo: Hoisting Car at Ishiyagawa Depot of Hanshin Electric Railway (Transportation News)
Photo: Lifting Track on Hanshin Electric Railway (Transportation News)