Japan Railway & Transport Review No. 64 (topics)

January–July 2014

1 January

Single-engine light aircraft made emergency landing on highway in Bronx, New York, USA, injuring pilot and three passengers

5 January

Small two-engine jet aircraft crashed and burned on landing at Aspen Airport in Colorado, USA, killing one person and injuring two others

5 January

Saudi Arabian Airways 767 landed safely on one set of undercarriage wheels at Medina Airport, Saudi Arabia, injuring 29 people onboard

6 January

Japanese National Police Agency announced 13th consecutive annual drop in 2013 road deaths to 4373 (down 38 year-on-year) but increase in road deaths to 2303 of people aged 65 and over (up 39 year-on-year) for the first time in 12 years

6 January

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Itochu Trading announced order from Macau government for 48 extra carriages for Macau Light Rapid Transit (21 km), following on from 2011 order for 110 carriages and electrical systems

8 January

JR East announced plan to abandon currently suspended Iwaizumi Line (38.4 km between Moichi and Iwaizumi, Iwate Prefecture) from 31 March 2014, after plan approved by Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) on 7 January; closed rail services to be replaced by buses

11 January

48 reindeer walking on snow-covered rail tracks in northern Sweden killed by trains; reindeers tend to run in front of cars or trains rather than moving aside

13 January

Airbus announced record 2013 net orders of 1503 units and deliveries of 626, both year-on-year increases of 833 and 588 units, respectively, following Boeing’s 6 January announcement of record 1355 orders (1203 in 2012) and 648 deliveries (601 in 2012), bringing Airbus back into lead for orders after 2 years and continuing Boeing’s 2-year lead in deliveries

17 January

Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) announced record number of foreign visitors to Japan in 2013 of 10.364 million (24% year-on-year increase) and first time reached 10 million level since start of statistical records in 1964, exceeding previous record of 8.611 million in 2010; increase due to weak yen and relaxed visa regulations for visitors from southeast Asia since July 2013

23 January

Kawasaki Heavy Industries announced delivery of three trainsets (33 carriages) including first sets of new subway cars (R188) to New York City Transport from Kawasaki’s local US affiliate (KRC); delivery included 23 new and 10 refurbished cars as part of 2011 contract option for 103 new and 370 refurbished cars to be delivered in stages by late 2015

24 January

Industry group composed of Itochu Trading, Kinki Rolling Stock and Kawasaki Heavy Industries announced order worth ¥14.8 billion from Hong Kong MTR for refurbishment of 348 existing cars and supply of 36 new passenger cars to extend new routes using existing and new tracks to new specifications

24 January

MLIT announced supervisory order based on Act on Passenger Railway Companies and Japan Freight Railway Company as well as business improvement order following Railway Business Act targeting JR Hokkaido following exposure of fraudulent rail inspection data; first instance of application of JR Company Law and JR Hokkaido to submit company improvement plan within this financial year

27 January

Sanriku Railway announced reopening of Minami-Lias Line (10.5 km between Yoshihama and Kamaishi) on 5 April and Kita-Lias Line (10.5 km between Omoto and Tanohata) on 6 April following suspension of services after Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami; company also celebrating 30 year anniversary of formation of first third-sector railway operator from old JNR Special Local Line in April 1984

27 January

Sections between Chiayi and Alishan (71.4 km) and Jhuci and Fenchihu on Taiwan tourist railway Alishan Line closed due to damage by 2009 typhoon reopened for operations with work on remaining sections expected to be completed by October

29 January

Itochu Trading announced contract worth about ¥400 billion from Queensland government, Australia, to supply 450 carriages (6 trainsets each of 75 cars) along with maintenance services, ground infrastructure, etc., using public-private cooperation (PPP) contract involving consortium of four companies including Bombardier (Canada) and its Australian subsidiary (BTA)

30 January

Chiba Prefecture, Japan, announced package of economic support from central and local governments for financially stretched Choshi Electric Railways (6.4 km between Choshi and Togawa); central government to bear one-third of capital investment with Chiba Prefecture and Choshi City each bearing one-sixth. Total capital investment for 10 years from 2014 estimated at ¥760 million with prefecture bearing ¥1.13 million in support

31 January

JR East proposed transfer of operations on Yamada Line (55.4 km between Miyako and Kamaishi in Iwate Prefecture) closed since Great East Japan Earthquake to local Sanriku Railway at Sanriku Revival Adjustment Meeting on same day. Closed sections to be restored and rail facilities to be conveyed at no cost to four trackside cities, offering possible unified operations with Minami Lias Line

31 January

In response to MLIT supervisory order on 24 January, JR Hokkaido submitted new budget plans for FY2014, including ¥2.5 billion each for safety investment and repair costs to MLIT with safety investment reaching record level at 30% year-on-year increase and repair costs also increasing by 14%

31 January

JR West offered ritual safety prayers for construction of Kyoto Railway Museum planned to incorporate steam locomotives held at Umekoji Steam Locomotive Museum, bringing total rolling stock collection to 50 pieces after planned opening in spring 2016



Former first RTRI Chairman Mr Masanori Ozeki died aged 89 years on 1 January. Joined old Ministry of Transport in 1946 after graduating in engineering from the University of Tokyo. Held posts at Tokyo Electric construction office in 1950 before becoming Managing Director at JNR, and Executive Director at Hitachi from 1987 to 1997. Responsible for development of old JNR MARS seat booking and ticket sales system


4 February

JR East announced ¥1 trillion safety investment plan for 5 years from FY2014 to renew aging infrastructure, update rolling stock, and take platform safety and antiearthquake measures; 20% more expenditure than previous 5-year plan ending in FY2013

8 February

Two-car passenger train running through mountainous part of Provence, southern France, hit and partly derailed by large rock tumbling down slope, killing 2 people and injuring 8 others

10 February

Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) and Transport Safety Board notified Hokkaido Prefectural police about alleged violations of Railway Business Act and Safety Board regulations resulting from JR Hokkaido manipulation of rail inspection data; first ever alleged violation by railway operator

15 February

Record-breaking snowfall hit Kanto and Tohoku regions of Japan on night of 14 February with 27 cm accumulating in central Tokyo following previous fourth heaviest postwar snowfall on 8 February; all transport systems including shinkansen, airports, etc., suffered widespread disruptions

15 February

Eight-car passenger train ran into back of another 8-car train standing at Motosumiyoshi Station on Tokyu Railway’s Toyoko Line in Nakahara Ward, Kawasaki City, derailing front two cars and slightly injuring 19 passengers; accident blamed on poor braking efficiency due to previous day’s heavy snow

17 February

Small plane belonging to Nepal Airlines crashed in mountains of western Nepal, killing all 18 people onboard

17 February

Co-pilot of Ethiopian Airlines B767-300ER hijacked plane with 202 passengers and crew flying from Addis Ababa to Rome before landing at co-Ann Trang International Airport, Geneva, Switzerland, where surrendered to police

18 February

Tokyo Metro and Viet Nam Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Board (MRB) concluded memorandum of mutual friendship in Hanoi City with Tokyo Metro receiving order for Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) funded aid project to support railway administration in Hanoi following establishment of local office in March 2013

20 February

Tokyu Railway announced entry into bus business in Binh Duong State, southern Viet Nam targeting synergy with new city development including new apartments and commercial offices in Binh Duong

21 February

Osaka Metropolitan Government announced plans to sell by limited tender government-managed third-sector Osaka Prefectural Urban Development body operating distribution facilities such as Senboku Rapid Railway, truck terminal, etc., to Nankai Electric Railway following prefectural rejection of sale to foreign capital fund after public tender; sale exceeds public tender of about ¥75 billion by about ¥3 billion but about ¥3 billion less than rejected foreign capital fund sale

23 February

Out-of-service train (10 cars) running after last service of day collided with work truck mistakenly entering rail section on Keihin Tohoku Line at JR East Kawasaki Station in Kawasaki City, derailing two front cars and slightly injuring driver and conductor; next-day services also disrupted

25 February

Kintetsu Railway announced transition to holding company from April 2015 with separation of railway business from other real estate, hotel and transport businesses, as well as positioning as affiliate of holding company and listed subsidiary

25 February

MLIT approved JR West application for railway operations (first sector) on Kabe Line extension (approximately 1.6 km from Kabe to Shinkodo (in Hiroshima Prefecture)); 46.2-km non-electrified section beyond Kabe running to Sandankyo abandoned in December 2003 but development of trackside Hiroshima Prefecture housing project favoured electrification of part of section

27 February

JR Central announced application to MLIT for approval to increase speed on high-speed section of Tokaido Shinkansen by 15 kph to 285 kph from Spring 2015; first speed increase in 23 years, shortening current 2 hour 35 minute journey by fastest train between Tokyo and Shin- Osaka Station by 2 or 3 minutes



Mr Seiji Matsuda appointed 3 February as next President of Hankyu Travel International Co., Ltd, from 1 April. Joined Hankyu in 1977 after graduating from Kansei Gakuin University and held various management positions including Executive in 2009, Representative and Managing Officer in 2009, before becoming Managing Director in 2012. Former President Ichiro Namai to become Chairman with representative rights

5 March

Cessna 172 light aircraft crashed into steel forest tower in Aichi Prefecture near Toyota City, Japan, killing 2 people onboard

8 March

Malaysia Airlines B777-200 carrying 239 passengers and crew disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with cause and crash site as yet (at 10 June) still undiscovered

14 March

Kawasaki Heavy Industries announced delivery and first commercial operation of two efWING railway carriages using carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) panels to Kumamoto Electric Railway; use of lightweight CFRP eliminates need for heavy coil springs, offering weight reductions and better ride comfort and safety

17 March

Four Japanese shinkansen operators of JR East, JR Central, JR West and JR Kyushu announced joint formation of International High-Speed Rail Association (IHRA) from 1 April to promote international standardization of Japanese high-speed railway systems

18 March

News helicopter from local TV station rashed soon after takeoff in Seattle, Washington, USA, killing two people onboard and engulfing 3 vehicles on ground in flames, leaving 1 other person badly injured

18 March

Panamanian registered freighter (12,630 tonnes) collided with Korean registered freighter (7406 tonnes) off coast of Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, before sinking, leaving 11 of 20 crew rescued, 1 dead, and 8 missing; all 14 crew of Korean vessel uninjured

18 March

Toshiba, Hitachi Manufacturing and Itochu Trading announced ¥4 billion order from Viet Nam Highway Company (VEC) for intelligent transport system (ITS) composed of electronic fare collection, operations control, monitoring, etc., systems for 55-km track between Ho Chi
Minh City and Dau Giay as first overseas ITS order and financed by yen loan

24 March

Train belonging to Chicago Transport Authority (CTA) derailed and struck platform after passing buffers without slowing at O’Hare International Airport, injuring 32 people including driver

24 March

Brake failure on bus running downhill in Tak Province, N. Thailand, caused bus to break through concrete barrier and fall 150 meters into ravine, killing 30 people and injuring 22 others

26 March

Bus overturned and struck by large truck and cars in Chongqing City, China, killing 15 people and leaving 56 others injured

27 March

JR West and JR group companies announced plans for renewal of 500 stores and kiosks operated in 1222 stations by West Japan Railway Daily Service Net and large convenience store operator Seven Eleven Japan to promote in-station shopping convenience on JR Kyushu, Keihin Electric, Kinki Nihon, etc., railway lines

27 March

ANA affiliate of ANA Holdings Group announced order for 70 planes of 5 models from Boeing and Airbus with book value of $1.727 trillion as largest ever company investment; delivery of 20 units of B777-9X, 6 units of B777-300ER, 14 units of B787-9, 7 units of A320neo, and 23 units of A321neo scheduled from 2016 to 2027

30 March

Pier under construction with 40-meter temporary beams in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan, overturned during towing, throwing 16 workers into sea, leaving 9 rescued, 5 drowned and 2 missing

30 March

With shift to summer timetable, annual international arrivals and departures at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport increased by 50% from 60,000 to 90,000 due to enlargement of international terminal handling more daytime flights with up to 77 flights each day and 8 airlines serving Europe, America, SE Asia, etc., and 23 international airlines

31 March

Last ANA Boeing B747 ‘Jumbo Jet’ flying between Tokyo’s Haneda and Okinawa’s Naha airports retired from service due to age and poor fuel economy; Japanese airlines served by 112 ‘Jumbos’ making both domestic and international flights since 1970 with 47 owned by ANA


Mr Osamu Shimada
appointed President of JR Hokkaido from 1 April. Joined old JNR after graduating in 1980 from Economics Department of the University of Tokyo before becoming JR Hokkaido Director in 2007 and JR Hokkaido Hotels President in 2012

Mr Yukio Suda
appointed Chairman of JR Hokkaido from 1 April. Joined old JNR in 1968 after graduating from Engineering Department of the University of Tokyo before becoming JR East Director in 1994, President of Totetsu Kogyo in 2002, Chairman in 2008 and Consultant from 2012

Mr Masafumi Shukuri

appointed Board Chairman of International High-Speed Rail Association (IHRA) from 1 April. Joined old Ministry of Transport in 1974 after graduating from Law Department of the University of Tokyo before becoming Director-General of Road Transport Bureau, Policy Bureau Chief, etc., and Vice-Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport from 2011 to 2012

1 April

Japanese railway operators revised fares in line with government increase in consumption tax from 5% to 8%; JR East and other large private railways in metropolitan regions announced dual-price increase strategy with fares rounded up in ¥1 units for payments using IC cards like Suica and PASMO, and in ¥10 units for conventional magnetic strip tickets

3 April

JR East announced consultation contract ranging from management to technology aspects with High Speed Two Ltd., business handling design of UK’s proposed 530-km HS2 line from London to Birmingham (phase 1) and Birmingham to Manchester (phase 2); contract
period covers 4 months from January to May 2014

6 April

Last closed section (10.5 km Omoto to Tanohata) on Kita Lias Line (71.0 km from Kuji to Miyako) of Sanriku Railway damaged by Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami reopened for service to complete reconstruction of entire 107.6 km of tracks including Minami Lias Line (36.6 km from Kamaishi to Sakari) after 3 years; lines celebrating 30th anniversary after opening as first-ever third sector railway following handover from old JNR in April 1984

6 April

JR West closed Modern Transportation Museum in Minato Ward, Osaka City, ending 52-year history on that site after first opening in 1962 to commemorate start of JNR Osaka Loop Line; rolling stock displays to move to new Kyoto Railway Museum now under construction in Kyoto

9 April

JR Central announced successful conclusion of technical consulting contract with Taiwan High Speed Rail Corporation operating shinkansen services in Taiwan

10 April

Tourist bus collided with truck on highway in northern California before catching fire, killing 10 people

10 April

Bus carrying primary schoolchildren ran off expressway in Hainan Province, China, before overturning, killing 8 children and injuring 32 others including driver

12 April

JR East started operation of ‘Steam Locomotive Ginga’ using restored C58 steam engine over 90.2-km section of Kamaishi Line between Hanamaki and Kamaishi to support regional tourism recovery following Great East
Japan Earthquake

12 April

Prime Minister Abe hosted ride on JR Central Maglev at Yamanashi Test Track with US Ambassador Kennedy to promote use of Maglev technology by US government for US east coast line

13 April

Bus collided with truck stopped on hard shoulder of highway in Vera Cruz State, Mexico, before catching fire, killing at least 36 people

13 April

12-car express train derailed an over turned in
Heilungjiang Province, China, injuring 15 people, after track maintenance workers removed rail

16 April

JR Hokkaido announced outline of Hokkaido Shinkansen due to open in 2016 and cutting fastest journey between Tokyo and New Hakodate (provisional name) stations to
4 hours and 10 minutes using H5 rolling stock with same specifications as Tohoku Shinkansen E5

16 April

Korean ferry (6825 tonnes) carrying at least 472 crew and passengers many of whom were children on highschool trip overturned near Jindo Island off S. Korean coast, drowning at least 270 people with 35 missing (at 7 May)

16 April

Hitachi Manufacturing announced conclusion of contract with UK Department for Transport (DfT) to deliver and maintain 497 carriages for Class 800 Series services on UK’s East Coast Main Line (ECML) and Great Western Main Line (GWML); contract composed of 227 carriages
for GWML in addition to 369 ordered in 2012 for total of 596 plus another 227 ordered in 2013 for total order of 897 cars (122 train sets). 800 Series includes both dieselelectric and electric designs

20 April

JR Kyushu announced start of new running tests of free-gauge train (FGT) using 4 train sets manufactured by Kawasaki Heavy Engineering (sets 1, 3 and 4) and Hitachi Manufacturing (set 2) including tests on 270 km of Kyushu Shinkansen in anticipation of start of commercial services on Nagasaki section of Kyushu Shinkansen

22 April

Passenger train derailed in Congo, Africa, killing at least 57 people; many passengers riding on carriage roofs

23 April

JR Central submitted environmental impact study for linear shinkansen planned to open in 2027 to Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism reflecting opinions on impacts of tunnels, high viaducts, etc., on cultural assets, etc., of 7 trackside prefectures

24 April

Yamanashi Prefecture opened new 3-storey linear railway study center called ‘DokiDoki Linear Center’ adjacent to JR Central Linear Test Track, offering visitors close-up views of running test trains

25 April

Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism announced decision to privatize Sendai Airport with runways and airport buildings to be privately managed in summer 2015 followed by full privatization in March 2016; making Sendai the first national airport to be privatized

28 April

Kochi Prefecture opened Central Regional Public Transport Restructuring Working Group tasked with examining integration of financially troubled Tosa Railway and Kochi Prefectural transport systems into new business to be established in October

30 April

JR East, JR West and JR Central published consolidated accounts for period ending March 2014; all 3 companies achieved record highs in net income due to increases in both sales and profits, marking record traffic volumes

30 April

Bulk transport CSX freight train derailed and spilled petroleum products into river in Virginia, USA, causing fire and temporary evacuation of several hundred local residents


Mr Hiroyuki Takahashi
appointed the next President of JTB from 30 June. Joined Japan Travel Bureau Foundation (JTB predecessor) in 1979 after graduating from Law Department of Kansai University, becoming Director in 2010 and President of JTB West from 2012; former President Hiromi Tagawa to become Chairman with Representative Rights, and previous Chairman Takashi Sasaki to become Councillor

2 May

Two cars of Seoul Metro derailed by collision on Line 2 at Sangwangsimni Station, injuring 238 passengers

2 May

Six cars of 8-car set on New York Metro derailed, injuring 19 passengers

4 May

Locomotive and 4 carriages derailed and overturned in Maharashtra State, western India, killing at least 19 people and injuring 130 others

5 May

Container vessel collided with small freighter near Hong Kong, sinking freighter and leaving 11 of 12 crew missing
with 1 rescued

8 May

Third-sector Kitakinki Railway (KTR, 83.6 km between Nishimaizuru, Miyazu, Toyooka, and 30.4 km between Miyazu and Fukuchiyama) announced choice of large high-speed bus operator Wheeler Alliance (Tokyo) to handle railway operations by separation of infrastructure from operations; KTR to become infrastructure holding company with transition before end of this financial year

8 May

JR East announced ¥18 billion budget over 4-year period up to 2017 for heavy snowfall countermeasures in Tokyo, such as snow ploughs and snow-melting systems for shinkansen and conventional lines

9 May

Following collision on Line 2 of Seoul Metro, Seoul City and Seoul Metro announced wide-ranging plans to improve operating systems with ¥79 billion investment by 2020 to renew worn rolling stock (650 cars) and build
‘smart’ general control center

11 May

Western end of old JR Hokkaido Esashi Line (42.1 km between Kikkonai and Esashi closed with rail operations
replaced by bus services; closure due to declining number of users as result of decreasing population and
conversion of 37.8 km section between Goryokaku and Kikkonai to third-sector railway as result of opening of
parallel Hokkaido Shinkansen

15 May

Osaka Metropolitan government announced sale of shares in Osaka Prefectural Urban Development (OTK)
managing 14.3-km Senboku Rapid Railway (Nakamozu to Izumichuo) as third-sector railway for ¥75 billion to Nankai Railway with Senboku Railway becoming subsidiary of Nankai; sale for ¥78.1 billion to US investment fund
originally approved but finally rejected by prefectural assembly when Nankai increased bid by ¥3 billion

15 May

Ferry carrying about 300 people struck by storm while crossing River Meghna, leaving at least 12 people dead
and many hundred others missing

18 May

Bus carrying children returning from church exploded and caught fire in southern Colombia, killing 31 children
and leaving 25 others with severe burns

19 May

Transformer under pantograph on train running on Metro Line 4 in Gunpo City, S. Korea, exploded to break train
windows and injured 11 passengers waiting on platform

20 May

Freight train derailed and collided with passenger train in suburbs of Moscow, Russia, killing 6 of some 400
passengers and injuring 24 others

21 May

High-speed Macao ferry collided with freighter near Hong Kong, injuring 330 ferry passengers

23 May

Bus carrying tourists from Taiwan overturned into river in Fujian Province, China, killing 4 people, injuring 10 and
leaving 3 others missing

26 May

Rail fastening ceremony held at Toyama Station for Hokuriku Shinkansen due to open between Nagano and
Kanazawa (228 km) in spring 2015 to link Tokyo with Kanazawa (454 km)

26 May

Express train collided with freight train standing in station in Uttar Pradesh State, northern India, derailing 6
carriages and leaving 23 people dead and 44 injured

26 May

Fire at central bus terminal in Seoul suburbs left 6 people dead and 42 injured

28 May

JR West announced spring 2015 termination of Twilight Express sleeper services between Osaka and Sapporo
as longest approximately 1500-km passenger service in Japan running since 1989

31 May

Small passenger jet crashed and burned on takeoff from Bedford Airport, Massachusetts, USA, killing all 7
people onboard


Mr Toshihiko Aoyagi
appointed the next President of JR Kyushu from 27 June. Joined old JNR in 1977 after graduating from Engineering Department of the University of Tokyo before becoming JR Kyushu Director in 2005 and Managing Director from 2012; previous President Koji Karaike to become Chairman with Representative Rights

1 June

JR East reopened Hirono to Tatsuta section of Joban Line in Fukushima Prefecture damaged by 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake; first railway line to restart operations inside 20-km exclusion zone around damaged TEPCO Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant

1 June

Experience-based tourist Kosaka Railway Rail Park opened in Kosaka Village, Akita Prefecture, using old
railway material abandoned at the closure of Kosaka Railway: the park features running diesel locomotive as
well as station restored to appearance when first opened

3 June

JR East announced design for new luxury sleeper train targeted to start operations in spring 2017; composed of
10 carriages with 17 compartments for 34 passengers and observation windows at front and back, as well as
restaurant and lounge cars

11 June

JR Hokkaido announced name of new terminus (Shin Hakodate Hokuto) in Hokuto City on Hokkaido Shinkansen due to open in spring 2016, as well as new station (Okutsugaru-Imabetsu) in Imabetsu-machi,
Aomori Prefecture

11 June

Airbus announced cancellation of order for 70 units of A350XWB next-generation large passenger jet by Dubai’s Emirates airline following Emirates review of plane configuration and placement of additional order for 50 units of ultra-wide-body Airbus A380 last year

16 June

Highway bus collided with tree on side of highway in outskirts of Caracas, Venezuela, killing at least 20 people
and injuring 10 others

17 June

Mitsubishi Corporation announced order worth ¥16.5 billion for 126 subway carriages (21 train sets) from
Istanbul City, Turkey, to be built by Spain’s leading rollingstock manufacturer CAF for first fully unmanned operation in Turkey

18 June

Boat carrying 97 illegal immigrants from Indonesia sank in Malacca Strait off west coast of Malaysia, leaving 66
people missing and 31 rescued

19 June

Three carriages of empty 6-car train derailed in Sagami- Ono Station of Odakyu Railroad near Sagamihara,
Kanagawa Prefecture, causing massive disruption to train timetable during recovery work but no injuries

21 June

UNESCO announced registration of Tomioka Silk Mill and Related Sites in Gunma Prefecture as World Cultural
Heritage Site to total 18 such sites in Japan including four Natural Heritage Sites

21 June

Torrential rains on JR Kyushu’s Ibusuki Makurazaki Line in Kagoshima Prefecture caused landslide onto tracks,
derailing two-car tourist express and injuring 15

22 June

Locomotive-hauled freight train with 20 wagons derailed at Satsukari Station on JR Hokkaido’s Esashi Line with no injuries but blocking services for 1.5 days on Tsugaru- Kaikyo Line linking Hokkaido with Honshu; second
derailment on same section of line in last 2 years

25 June

Etihad Airways of UAE announced merger with currently restructuring major Italian airline Alitalia with 49% stock
buyout; Alitalia taken over by Italian investment group for restructuring following 2008 bankruptcy but yet to return to operating profitability

27 June

Gas pipeline exploded in southern India, killing at least 16 people

28 June

Honda announced first successful test flight of massproduced Honda Jet airplane manufactured by subsidiary, in North Carolina, USA; jet with twin engines mounted above and behind wings carries 7 passengers and has orders for more than 100 units with first deliveries expected in 2015

28 June

Full electrification of 168-km section of Taiwan High Speed Rail line between Karen and Taitung completed with start of operation Japanese-built Puma pendulum tilting trains between Taipei and Taitung on same day; new train timetable to start from 16 July

30 June

Korean high-speed KTX started services to Incheon International Airport using new 2.2-km track to directly link airport with Pusan

1 July

Malaysian low-cost carrier (LCC) Air Asiana announced plans to rejoin Japanese domestic market, targeting services in summer 2015 with establishment of Air Asiana Japan; additionally taken 18% share of Rakuten travel site instead of ANA as well as investments in cosmetics and sporting goods retailers

2 July

Small Fokker 50 crashed immediately after takeoff from airport in Nairobi, Kenya, killing all 4 people onboard

3 July

Section of elevated expressway under construction in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, holding World Cup semifinals collapsed onto passing bus, killing 2 people and injuring 22 others

9 July

Boeing announced order worth $5.6 billion from Dubai’s Emirate airline for 150 units of next-generation B777X
with option for 50 additional units; Emirates previously cancelled order for 70 units of Airbus A350 in June

10 July

Bus carrying kindergarten children drove into reservoir in Hunan Province, China, drowning all 11 people onboard
including 8 children

14 July

World’s largest Farnborough International Aircraft Show opened for 1 week outside London with displays of latest aircraft from major manufacturers; Boeing unveiled first display of B787-9 with 6 meter extended body of B787 and Airbus announced fuel-saving A330neo

15 July

Three subway cars derailed in Moscow Metro tunnel, killing 22 people including driver and injuring 217 others

15 July

Local governments alongside conventional narrow-gauge line running parallel to Hokkaido Shinkansen (opening
2016) between Goryokaku and Kikkonai and to be managed separately, announced 1 August establishment of company preparing to takeover line as third-sector railway business with appointment of Deputy Governor Yutaka Arakawa as company President

16 July

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in conjunction with Sumitomo Trading announced order for Automated People Mover
(APM) from Orlando International Airport, Florida, USA, as fifth APM order in USA

17 July

Malaysian Air B777-200 shot down in suspected error by surface-to-air missile while overflying eastern Ukraine
with loss of all 295 people onboard

17 July

Emergency response helicopter crashed into residential tower block in Kwangju City, S. Korea, killing all 5 people
onboard including pilot

18 July

Marubeni announced selection as preferred operator for Australian government Sydney North West Rail Link Project using 36-km automatic transit system in northwest Sydney

19 July

Tanker truck carrying alcohol and expressway bus collided on expressway in Hunan Province, China, before catching fire and killing 43 people onboard and injuring 6 others

22 July

Head-on collision between slow train and tourist train on Korails’ Yeongdong Line viaduct in Taebaek, angwondo after tourist train mistakenly entered single-track section killed 1 person out of about 110 people onboard and injured 90 other

22 July

New 760-m bridge opened to link Mont Saint-Michel World Heritage Site on island off coast of northwest France to mainland and eliminate use of previous causeway often blocked by drifting sand; bridge designed not to obstruct strong tidal currents

23 July

Small ATR72 turboprop plane crashed on landing near Magong Airport, south Taiwan, killing 48 of 58 people onboard and injuring 15 others including 5 people on ground

24 July

MD83 operated by Algerian Airways crashed in northeast Mali desert, killing all 166 passengers and crew

25 July

Approx. 500-km high-speed rail line constructed by European consortium and linking Ankara and Instanbul, Turkey, opened to commercial service at 250 km/h using Spanish-built rolling stock; Istanbul terminal station on Asian side of Bosporus Strait still not linked with city centre on European side

25 July

Sapporo City, Hokkaido, announced revised start of work on tram loop line from spring 2015 until after October 2015; since existing 8.4 km of tracks separated by gap of just 400 m between Nishi 4-chome and Susukino stations, integrated loop line to be achieved by building short track length following Ministry of Land, nfrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) approval for orbital transport reinforcement plan in April 2013

25 July

MLIT Transportation Safety Board published accident investigation report into April 2012 derailment of freight train on JR Hokkaido Esashi Line caused by shift of container load

26 July

New 19-km Silver Line subway using new carriages built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries on some parts opened in Washington D.C., USA, to link suburbs with city centre using through-operations over existing lines as first new subway in 23 years; full opening of line for direct connection to Dulles International Airport scheduled for 2018

27 July

Father and daughter walking on beach in Sarasota, Florida, USA, killed by Piper Cherokee aircraft making emergency landing; pilot and 2 passengers unharmed

27 July

Five carriages of Eastern and Orient Express (18 carriages) running between Singapore and Bangkok derailed in Ratchaburi Province, central Thailand, slightly
injuring two tourist passengers

29 July

Airbus announced cancellation of order for purchase of six A380 aircraft by Skymark, Japan’s third largest carrier due to worsening Skymark profit forecasts caused by yen devaluation and competition with LCCs

30 July

JR East announced plan to fully reopen 50.2-km section between Aoba Dori and Ishinomaki on Senseki Line in Miyagi Prefecture closed by damage caused by 2011
Great East Japan Earthquake in June 2015; 10.4-km section between Takagimachi and Rikuzen’ono moved further inland

30 July

ANA Holdings announced cancellation of investment in Burmese airline Asian Wings Airways due to increasingly severe competition caused by increase in Burmese domestic airlines compared to previous year


Mr Masaru Honda appointed MLIT Vice-Minister on 8 July;
joined old Ministry of Transport in 1976 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as MLIT Assistant Vice-Minister from October 2012

Mr Hideo Tokuyama appointed MLIT Vice-Minister for Engineering Affairs on 8 July; joined old Ministry of onstruction in 1979 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Engineering, holding post of Director-General of Road Bureau from August 2013

Mr Hiroshi Muto appointed MLIT Vice-Minister on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Transport in 1979 after graduating from University Kyoto Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as Director-General in August 2013

Mr Kisaburo Ishii appointed MLIT Vice-Minister on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Construction in 1979 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as City Bureau Chief in August 2013

Mr Takatoshi Nishiwaki appointed MLIT Deputy Vice- Minister, Minister’s Secretariat on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Construction in 1979 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as Policy Bureau Manager in February 2013

Mr Keiji Takiguchi appointed MLIT Director-General of Policy Bureau on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Transport in 1979 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as Director-General of Railway Bureau in September 2012

Mr Shin Honto appointed MLIT Director-General of National Spatial Planning and Regional Policy Bureau on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Construction in 1982 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as Deputy Vice-Minister for Policy Coordination in January 2014

Mr Masahiko Ozeki appointed MLIT City Bureau Director- General on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Construction in 1981 after graduating from Hokkaido University Faculty of Agriculture, holding various senior posts before appointment as Business Development Headquarters Deputy General Manager in June 2013

Mr Atsushi Fukasawa appointed MLIT Director-General of Road Bureau on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Construction in 1979 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Engineering, holding various senior posts before appointment as Maintenance Chief of Kanto District Bureau in August 2013

Mr Kozo Fujita appointed MLIT Director-General of Railway Bureau on 8 July; joined old Ministry of Transport in 1982 after graduating from the University of Tokyo Faculty of Law, holding various senior posts before appointment as Deputy Vice- Minister for Policy Coordination in August 2013