Tokyo: The Japanese government is considering requiring railway operators across the country to install security cameras in newly built trains following a knife attack inside a train in Tokyo in October, transport ministry officials said on Friday.
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism will study revising an ordinance on disaster prevention measures that instructs operators to take safety measures to prevent fires, but so far, there are no requirements for security cameras, Xinhua reported.
The decision is made after the ministry exchanged opinions on security measures with major railway operators including the Japan Railways group.
Regarding the October 31 attack, the operator Keio Corp. has said that the staff was unaware of what had happened after passengers pushed emergency buttons at several locations inside the train. There were also no security cameras to help staff properly grasp what was happening.
In addition, after an emergency stop, as the train stopped slightly behind the proper stopping position, some doors closed, and many passengers had to escape by climbing out of train windows onto the platform.
The officials said that the transport ministry and railway operators are also studying how to handle emergency buttons and levers in case of emergency.
In the October 31 attack on the Tokyo train, a man in his 70s was seriously hurt after allegedly being stabbed in the chest, and the other 16 victims sustained minor injuries. The suspect also allegedly ignited a fire inside the train.
A number of attacks on trains and station premises in the Tokyo area have occurred this year.
A man stabbed and slashed 10 passengers in August on an Odakyu Electric Railway commuter train. Two men were stabbed on October 15 by a man at JR Ueno Station.
In a separate incident, two people were injured at a Tokyo subway station in late August as a man sprayed sulfuric acid in the face of another man.