The punctuality of Japanese trains often makes headlines around the world, but while rail staff and the trains themselves have a lot to do with the efficiency of the system, passengers play a role in keeping the trains running on time too.
Posters and rail announcements at the station ask passengers to follow basic rules and show common courtesy to others when riding the rails, which helps to ensure trains run without incident and on time. And while most are happy to oblige with these simple requests, sometimes there are commuters who decide to play by their own rules, causing havoc for rail staff and everyone else on the train.
Case in point is this man, who was filmed on a train in Nagoya in Aichi Prefecture recently. The man can be seen continually putting his hand in between the closing doors, causing them to open again and again, which stops the train from leaving the station at its designated time.
Take a look at what happened in the clip below.
The incident, which was originally filmed by a Twitter user who took the video down after it went viral, occurred at Sakae Station on the Higashiyama subway line at 8:40 p.m. on April 6. The clip has since been uploaded by several other users, showing the man purposely putting his left hand in between the closing doors, causing them to open and close at least seven times.
Another passenger even attempts to hold the man away from the door for a moment, but then a more senior-looking member of staff approaches the carriage. The man then tries to use his foot to keep the doors open, but as the staff member watches on, the doors finally close, allowing the train to pull away from the platform after a delay of at least one minute.
The passenger’s actions quickly became a hot topic online and on television talk shows, where presenters discussed the man’s irresponsible behavior. It’s unclear as to whether or not the man was inebriated, or if he had some personal beef with station staff, or if he simply wanted to get some attention and bask in the glow of hearing the onboard apology from the driver for the delay he’d created.
Whatever the reason, nobody was impressed, and many took to Twitter to voice their opinions about the incident.
“They should arrest him for obstruction of business.”
“There should be a rule that if someone does this the other passengers can push the person out and leave them on the platform.”
“Staff should’ve pulled him off the train.”
“I was on that train and can confirm it made us arrive a minute late at all the stations on the line.”
“Another case of rogai”
Rogai is a Japanese word that refers to problems caused by the elderly, especially gerontocracy, when elders exert excessive control over the young. While the term has become a bit of a buzzword following cases of reported crimes committed by the elderly in recent years, there’s been some discussion as to whether or not the passenger’s actions should be described as rogai or simply classified as a nuisance act.
Either way, the city’s transportation bureau made a statement following the incident, asking passengers to refrain from this type of behavior in the interest of public safety. Thankfully, though, the elderly commuter in the clip isn’t representative of all passengers travelling on a senior’s ticket.
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