crime

Violence against train station staff still rife

18 Comments

The Association of Japanese Private Railways says violence against personnel at train stations is still rife.

According to the association's data, which covers the 16 largest private railway companies in Japan, 231 cases of violence against station and train staff were logged last year, Fuji TV reported Thursday.

The association says this marks the fifth consecutive year that the number of official assaults has exceeded 200. Staff training in how to deal with difficult passengers is proceeding as quickly as possible, it added, but that repeated calls for passengers to refrain from using physical violence against its staff are being ignored.

Data showed that 181 incidents -- 78% of the total -- occurred after 5 p.m. and 25% of assaults occurred following warnings given to passengers who were smoking in carriages, or harassing staff, the association reported.

According to the association figures, 77% of the attacks were carried out under the influence of alcohol. That figure, it says, is up from 75% in fiscal 2011. It also added that over half of all assaults, 123 cases, occurred between 10 p.m. and the last train.

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18 Comments
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Old men here are nasty. They bump into everyone, sweat, don't wear deodorant and get ultra angry at the poor train staff. Instead of that stupid "women only car" they should have one for ojichan only. Like a cage!

14 ( +16 / -2 )

231? That seems really low, for the amount of trains and passengers that use the train daily.

25% of assaults occurred following warnings given to passengers who were smoking in carriages.

Lifetime ban for riding on the train please.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

According to the association figures, 77% of the attacks were carried out under the influence of alcohol...... 123 cases, occurred between 10 p.m. and the last train.

Do you think there is a connection between alcohol and violence on trains? And, what are they gonna do about it? Nothing, of course!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Smoking!? Crap! Ban them!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Implement localised sprinklers against smokers!

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Like alot of things in Japan, the rules are there but they are rarely enforced strongly enough. All that is needed is a few members of the platform staff to press criminal assault charges against these guys, and one or two of them to get convicted... After that the number of incidents would drop...

3 ( +4 / -1 )

231? That seems really low, for the amount of trains and passengers that use the train daily.

It is a pretty low number and I think other commuters get punched more than the actual staff does.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Seems that most people here are attacking the 25% who were smokers and say very little about the 77% who were drinking. I would think that the 25% who were smoking on the trains were also part of the 77% that had been drinking as people who both drink and smoke tend to smoke more when they have been drinking and people who have been drinking tend to lose self control. If you want to give people separate cars on the train have all those who have been drinking in one car as they are the ones who cause most of the problems.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Perhaps Japan could address its function alcoholic problem?

That being said, if any of you have ever had an issue with train staff here, you know they won't do a damn thing to help you - I've personally slept on a shinkansen overnight because JR refused taxis to get people home. THEIR fault, not the weather nor a jumper. They handled the situation very poorly and in such cases, I don't blame people for being upset and getting pushy - I wanted to myself - because staff just repeat the same thing over and over again and don't do anything but "follow protocol" which is often useless.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

to put things in perspective: Shinjuku station alone is used by 3.5 million people / day (statistic in 2007, probably more now). What is the number of people using the train all over Japan during one year? 200 incidents is ridiculously low

3 ( +3 / -0 )

DisillusionedMay. 24, 2013 - 08:55AM JST According to the association figures, 77% of the attacks were carried out under the influence of alcohol...... 123 cases, occurred between 10 p.m. and the last train. Do you think there is a connection between alcohol and violence on trains? And, what are they gonna do about it? Nothing, of course!

What COULD they do? Bar people who drink from trains? There'd be a citywide riot, every night. And take a look at a downtown platform around midnight and you see how futile it'd be to try to filter out troublemakers.

I think the best would be to have a couple of fairly beefy, well trained guys on each train to keep people who dance, dive, vomit, fight, smoke, sing, sleep across 6 seats etc in line.

Besides in rural areas plenty of young, non-drunk punks sit on the platform and smoke .

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I say, grow some balls. Back home, there is a zero tolerance policy when it comes to violence towards staff. After all, they're human too. If some of the JR staff can be racist and give absolute appalling service to me, then they can sure as hell look after themselves and stop being cowards with Japanese customers.

Japanese customers are so used to being pampered, they think they can get away from anything and assume they should be treated as kings. That's why they dare.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The problem is linked to being self-absorbed...a growing problem here. People are losing their manners....

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Train all staff in self defence. Krav Maga for instance.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

3 years in Japan and taking train every day, and sometime late I have never ever seen any incivility. I cannot tell the same from any cities in Europe or North America I have lived.

But if the train loudspeaker could shut up in Tokyo Metro, this would be a great relief!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Announcers need to shut up. I'm not saying I condone the violence, but seriously the several "DOOR SHIMARIMASU GOCHUI KUDASAI" repetitions (EVEN AFTER THE DOORS ARE ALREADY CLOSED) seriously shits me to tears... talk about power-management issues!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Given that there are 14.6 billion passenger trips a year in the greater Tokyo area, I wouldn't say that 231 incidents indicates that the train system is "rife" with violence against employees. Having said that, no one should have to fear assault while at work. I wonder what the figures are for taxi drivers?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What is amazing is not the amount of violence, but the lack of violence. Travelling by train can be extremely stressful, yet so few people actually get violent.

I have been living here many years. In that time I can remember seeing a fight once at Yokohama station. That is the only real violence I have ever witnessed on the rail system.

I heartily agree with those who say the noise level at stations is too great. It is enough to drive anyone crazy. Instead of men screaming over the speaker system in voice that seemed to be designed to create panic, a calm woman's voice would be more appropriate. Compare the announcements on Bangkok's Skytrain with those on JR. A Japanese said that they have to shout to make people listen. That is not true. Get rid of all unnecessary messages and people will listen to the necessary ones. And get rid of other irritations, too, such as the music they play just before the doors shut. I don't smoke, but some people may feel that they need a cigarette to calm their nerves only to be told that such nerve-claming is not permitted.

Now, why doesn't someone just cut the wires to or take a hammer to the loudspeakers instead? That would be better than violence to staff.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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