Japan Railway & Transport Review No. 35 (pp.70–71)

November 2002 – January 2003

2 NovemberShiodome Station of Oedo Subway Line and Yurikamome New Transport opened at 31-ha Shiodome redevelopment site in Tokyo
3 NovemberFerry carrying over 200 people sank off coast of Ambon in Indonesia, drowning five and leaving 73 missing
6 NovemberOne of several firefighters on tracks of JR West Tokaido Line in Osaka's Yodogawa Ward hit and killed by Super Haku 11 express while responding to emergency call
Luxair Fokker 50 crashed near Findel airport in Luxembourg, killing 18 of 22 passengers and crew
Express sleeper train bound for Vienna from Paris caught fire in Nancy, eastern France, killing 12 passengers
7 NovemberLight plane carrying 10 people crashed shortly after takeoff on Indonesia island of Kalimantan (Borneo), killing seven passengers and crew
11 NovemberLight plane owned by Philippine Laoag International Airlines crashed into Manila bay shortly after takeoff from Manila Airport, killing six passengers
12 NovemberFirst carriage for Tobu Kyuryo Line, Japan's first commercial High Speed Surface Transport (HSST) maglev unveiled at test line in Nagoya. Maglev to run on 8.9-km line linking Fujigaoka Station of Nagoya Subway and Yakusa Station of Aichi Loop Line near site of EXPO 2005 Aichi
13 NovemberLequios Airlines announced plan to begin twice-daily return service between Haneda and Naha (Okinawa) starting 1 June 2003 using Boeing 767
20 NovemberKobe Municipal Transportation Bureau announced start of female-only cars on all Kobe City Subway (30.6 km) services from 16 December
Odakyu Electric Railway announced launch of Odakyu Good Pass linking automated ticket gates to mobile phone email function from 3 February 2003
27 NovemberJR West signed agreement with Shiga and Fukui prefectures to convert 44 km of JR West's Hokuriku and Kosai lines to DC power with worked scheduled to begin in late FY2006
Alitalia Airlines plane with 74 passengers and crew bound for Paris from Bologna hijacked by Italian before making emergency landing at Lyon Airport where hijacker apprehended
1 DecemberMorioka–Hachinohe 96.6-km extension of Tohoku Shinkansen opened, extending shinkansen service from Tokyo to Hachinohe in northern Aomori Prefecture in just 2 hours and 56 minutes
Rinkai Line belonging to Tokyo Waterfront Area Rapid Transit extended 4.4 km from Tennozu Isle to Osaki, linking Shin Kiba and Osaki with connections to JR East's Saikyo Line
Tail of Airbus A300-600 belonging to Japan Airlines System brushed main wing of A340-600 belonging to Lufthansa while taxiing on temporary runway at New Tokyo International Airport (Narita)
3 DecemberBureau of International Exposition (BIE) named Shanghai as host for 2010 World Expo
5 DecemberGroundbreaking ceremony held for 7.1-km rail–air link between Natori Station on JR Tohoku main line and Sendai Airport with opening scheduled in FY2006
Lufthansa announced start of world's first onboard broadband Internet service for passengers from 15 January 2003
9 DecemberUAL parent company of United Airlines filed for Chapter 11 protection under Federal Bankruptcy Code with debts totalling about ¥2,800 billion
11 DecemberAs part of transport reforms, Japan's House of Councillors passed Tokyo Subway Company Law, Independent Administrative Institution Railroad Construction/Operation Facility Construction Support Organization Law and other laws, dissolving Teito Rapid Transit Authority (TRTA) on 1 April 2004 and establishing Tokyo Subway
13 DecemberJapan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport (MLIT) published Railway Consumer Report on homepage of Railway Bureau to provide statistics on JRs and other major private railways in Japan
14 DecemberNorwegian-flagged car transporter carrying 2862 luxury cars collided with Cuban-flagged container ship near Dover in North Sea and sank without loss of life
16 DecemberOverloaded ferry capsized in river near Robertsport in Liberia, drowning at least 48 people
18 DecemberJR West announced IC Operating CArd (ICOCA) prepaid card and commuter pass to be adopted at about 250 stations in Kansai area in 2003
Large overloaded boat capsized on Para River in Amazon, drowning 33 people and leaving about 40 missing
20 DecemberBoeing Corporation cancelled development of next-generation Sonic Cruiser planned to travel close to speed of sound
23 DecemberAntonov 140 passenger plane crashed outside Isfahan in central Iran, killing 46 passengers and crew
24 DecemberOpening ceremony held to commemorate opening of first 8.3 km of planned Delhi Metro partly financed by Japanese ODA grant aid and using Korean-built carriages
MLI T announced Global Tourism Strategy to increase 4.77 million foreign visitors to Japan in 2001 to 8 million by 2007
25 DecemberCeremony held at Ruzhino Station on eastern end of Trans-Siberian Railroad to celebrate full electrification of entire 9300 km of line
31 DecemberGerman Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji took ride on 30-km Shanghai MAGLEV (world's first commercial MAGLEV) scheduled to open in March 2003 and linking Pudong International Airport and Yang Road Station in 8 minutes at speeds up to 430 km/h
2 JanuaryNational Police Agency reported 8326 traffic fatalities in 2002 (down 421 from 2001 and half worst-ever figure of 16,765 in 1970)
3 JanuaryJR East announced plan for joint use of its SUICA commuter/passenger pass and JR West's ICOCA to be introduced by late 2004
Passenger and cargo trains collided at Ghatnandur Station in western India, killing 18 and injuring about 40
4 JanuaryTalgo express train derailed near Albacete in central Spain, killing two passengers and injuring about 20
6 JanuaryBoeing announced deliveries totalling 381 civilian aircraft in 2002 (down 28% from 2001) blaming fall on impact of 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks and long airline recession
Commuter train collided with truck on crossing in Burbank near Los Angeles, killing truck driver and injuring at least 30 train passengers
8 JanuaryTurkish Airlines RJ100 passenger plane crashed on landing at Diyarbaki in southeastern Turkey, killing 75 out of 80 passengers and crew
Small Air Midwest aircraft crashed after takeoff in Charlotte, North Carolina, killing all 21 passengers and crew
Narita Airport introduced test check-in system using personal bio-data such as iris pattern and face contour for personal identification
9 JanuaryBus fell into ravine in jungle, southeast of Quito, Ecuador, killing at least 12 and injuring 27
Wreckage of Peruvian Fokker F28 carrying 46 passengers and crew found in Amazon jungle with no survivors
12 JanuaryGroundbreaking ceremony held on Lantau Island for Hong Kong Disneyland with planned opening in FY 2005–06
17 JanuaryUS Department of Transportation conditionally approved alliance of Delta, Northwest, and Continental airlines with cooperation to include code sharing on international and domestic flights
MLIT approved application by Echizen Railway to take over operations of Keifuku Electric Railway with both currently shut lines to return to service in late 2003
21 JanuaryTokyo Immigration Bureau announced that 24.506 million people left and entered Japan via Narita Airport in 2002 (up 12% over previous year and highest number since airport opened in 1978)
23 JanuaryConsortium of seven Japanese companies won ¥100-billion contract to build high-speed section at northern end of Taiwan Shinkansen with construction planned to start in October 2005
JR Freight announced start of test runs of prototype M50 express container train dubbed Super Rail Car consisting of 12 wagons to carry 28 special small-lot containers with locomotive at each end
25 JanuaryEight-car subway train on London Underground Central Line derailed and collided with platform at Chancery Lane Station, injuring 30 passengers
26 JanuaryChartered China Airlines B-747 became first plane from Taiwan to land on mainland China at Shanghai's Pudong International Airport
31 JanuaryFour-car commuter train derailed near Sydney, Australia, killing 9 and injuring 15


Mr Hiroshi Ishida
Former JTB President died on 16 December. After graduating from Wakayama Commercial High School in 1942, entered JTB-forerunner Toa Travel in 1943, becoming JTB Director in 1973, President in 1982, and Board Chairman from 1990 until 1996

Mr Susumu Takizawa
Appointed President of Hokkaido International Airlines (Air DO) on 27 January. Entered former Ministry of Transport (now MLIT) after graduating in liberal arts from University of Tokyo in 1969, where occupied various posts in Civil Aviation Bureau before retiring in 1997. Appointed Chairman of Japan Tourist Association in July 1997

Mr Masayuki Inoue
Appointed President of Skymark Airlines on 28 January. Joined British Airways in February 1989 and then Skymark Airlines in May 2002, where served as general manager in President's Office and Sales Department. Obtained masters degree from Hosei University in March 1998 while at British Airways