Monday, 25 April 2011

Great going Japan Rail East

JR East the train company that serves Tokyo and the north)  suffered terribly with the earthquake.  The Shinkansen line was made untrafficable with more than 1000 places that needed repairs, numerous regional lines have been destroyed in parts, and trains lost.

The Morioka-Akita and Morioka-Shin Aomori lines were restored within a fortnight, the line to Fukushima opened perhaps 10 days ago, today the line from Fukushima to Sendai was reopened.    At this stage, on the Shinkanen line, it is just the Sendai Ichinoseki part that needs to be fixed.  It will reopen on the 29 April.   Progress is also being made on the local lines to the coast - though the damage here is much more serious in parts with bridges washed away.  For all the complaint about Japan being inefficient with disaster response, I think the JR effort here is really remarkable.   There were problems with the electricity supply today, and trains were delayed, nonetheless it's pretty remarkable.

Hiro's cousin is getting married in Hachinohe (on the map below), during Golden Week.  It was affected by the tsunami though there were only handful of casualties.  Despite the restored train links,  I suspect the motor bike rather than the train is going to win out for transportation up there....
Tohokushinkansen Map
JR have put posters up in the railways station both explaining and apologizing for the inconvenience, and in the  past few days, posters for cherry blossoms in eastern Tohoku have also gone up.
At JR stations Tohoku destinations - Hirosaki (Aomori) and
Kakunodate (Akita) posters have returned.   It's a heart warming sight.

With one heart lets ganbarou (try our hardest)

Posters about reconnecting the train lines in Tohoku.

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