ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon Twitter
Transportation

Bullet train to restore service as JR East faces big repair bill

Tokyo-Kanazawa line to resume direct trips at reduced capacity Oct. 25

Shinkansen bullet trains submerged at their Akanuma base in Nagano Prefecture on Oct. 13. (Photo by Akira Kodaka)

TOKYO -- East Japan Railway faces a potential 29 billion yen ($266 million) bill if flood-damaged bullet trains need to be replaced on the Tokyo-Kanazawa line that resumes direct service next week.

Floodwaters unleashed by Typhoon Hagibis forced JR East to shut down part of the Hokuriku shinkansen, which connects Tokyo and Kanazawa. Direct service between the two cities is expected to be restored Oct. 25, the company said Friday.

But 120 shinkansen cars were flooded at a rail yard in Nagano, accounting for a third of the fleet serving the line. The Hokuriku line's service will reach only 80% or so of regular capacity.

Damage from the storm will impact JR East's financial results for the full year ending March 2020. "There was a decrease in revenue due to the suspension of service, as well as damage to equipment, so we anticipate an effect on earnings," a representative said.

The 120 cars form 10 sets of trains, two of which derailed. The electrical system, including power equipment for signaling devices, appears severely damaged, according to JR East.

The operator says it does not know the full cost of the typhoon's impact. Floodwaters filled affected trains up to the armrests, and the extent of the damage has yet to be determined. The cars will need to be repaired or scrapped.

JR East operates 96 of the flooded cars, with the rest under counterpart West Japan Railway, or JR West. If all the JR East cars are decommissioned, replacing them would take around 29 billion yen, since one car costs roughly 300 million yen.

The train cars are insured, but "the payout is small and whether the coverage applies is uncertain," a JR East representative said.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 1 month for $0.99

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends July 31st

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to Nikkei Asia has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more