Archive for the 'Transportation' Category

Bicycle helmet hat combo appeals to elderly bike riders

Caphor brand bicycle helmet with removable hat for elderly bike riders in Japan Bicycle helmets with removable, stylish hats have been created to entice elderly Japanese to wear a helmet when riding a bike. The hats are designed so they can also be worn without the helmet.

Bicycle helmets are rarely worn by the elderly in Japan. Seniors say they’d like to wear safety helmets, but the helmets are uncomfortable. Elderly cyclists also say they are embarrassed about wearing traditional bike helmets.

A national law requires only bicyclists under the age of 13 to wear a helmet, whether alone or when riding as passengers with a parent on a bicycle. Some municipalities have enacted local laws that require all bicyclists to wear a helmet. In 2013, Ehime Prefecture, with its numerous scenic bike paths, enacted a law requiring cyclists of all ages to wear a helmet.

 

The Japanese government advises adults to wear a helmet when cycling, but it is uncommon to see adult cyclists wearing helmets as they run errands by bicycle on city streets. Although when the activity is recreational riding, along a riverside path for example, bike riders wearing helmets can be seen.

 

Bicycle helmets with detachable hat for elderly cyclists in Japan The Tokyo Foundation for Employment Services, which provides employment opportunities to the elderly, asked Nippon Parade, a manufacturer of caps and costumes for marching bands, to develop a bicycle helmet that would be attractive to the elderly. Nippon Parade, which was looking for new business opportunities, developed a hat-helmet concept. The company had the skills and design equipment which allowed it to create a lightweight helmet and a selection of fashionable hats that are easy to remove from the helmet.

 

 

Bicycle helmet and removable hat for Japanese senior citizen bicycle riders The hat covers the helmet, and a quick-release system frees the hat from the helmet. The hat can be worn by itself.

According to Manabu Ito, president of Nippon Parade, more than 6% of deaths aged 65 and older in in the metropolitan area are caused by bike accidents, and head injury accounts for nearly 7% of the bike accident deaths. Nippon Parade makes helmets that meet strict strict international safety standards, and offers 10 types of fashionable detachable hats.

The helmets, start at JPY 7,580, and are sold by Nippon Parade online, cycling shops, and major electronics retailers.

 

Train groper impersonates victim on pervert exchange BBS

Man masquerading as target woman asks to be fondled

In April a man fondled a 23-year-old woman on the JR Wakayama Line in Osaka prefecture. The victim protested and when the train stopped the woman grabbed the guy and turned him into the station police. The 49-year-old suspect claimed that the woman had posted a fondling invitation on a "Pervert Exhange" BBS online and that he was only taking advantage of her request. He was released from custody.

The police continued to investigate and on July 9 re-arrested the suspect on suspicion of violating the prefectural prohibition of obscene acts law. The police say the suspect posed as the victim online and invited men to fondle her. Additional charges are pending.

"Pervert Exchange" (AKA:"Chikan Play") sites are free, legal internet bulletin boards where people who want to be fondled can meet fondlers. The sites openly assist mutual-consent fondling. If a participant later claimed he or she was the subject of a criminal fondling act, legal experts say it would be difficult to prosecute the case.

According to the police, the suspect in the April incident had stalked the victim, noted her commuting routine, and then, posing as the woman, posted the details on a chikan play website. Masquerading as the woman, and using a false name, the man described "herself" and her attire and stated that she usually doesn’t like to be groped on the train but on April 30 she would be in the mood for being touched. She included her location on the train and asked men to fondle her. On the train, the man found the woman and fondled her.

Real-time fondling GPS

Police say the man had also previously posted "real time" fondling location data. In this method, instead of learning the female target’s train travelling times in advance, the suspect had spotted his target victim in a train car and immediately gone online posing as the target and saying "she" was available for fondling. She indicated the train line, her attire and her location on the train.

Men who use the chikan play websites and who desire to fondle women on trains can check the website while commuting by train in the hopes of finding a woman’s groping invitation on the same train.

 

CGI reenactment:

Translation of Japanese message suspect posted on fondler’s website: "I want to be touched. I take the JR Wakayama Line and I get on the train at Kokawa station at 7:10 AM. The train has 4 carriages and I always get in the second carriage or the last carriage. My face has a normal expression. I’m a little chubby. I put my makeup on in the train so you can spot me. I have large breasts and sensitive nipples. I want you to touch me softly. If there is time, I want you to touch me directly and lick me. Somebody please fondle me." (signed) Yu-san…Yui

 

Train stations: Don’t look at mobile phone while walking

Poster in train station Tokyo do not walk and look at your smartphonePeople are being asked to not use mobile phones while walking in train stations in Tokyo. The transport ministry and railway companies began the effort after a 5th grade elementary school boy who was walking and looking at his smartphone accidentally stepped off the platform and onto the train tracks at Tokyo’s Yotsuya Station on May 27.

The boy fell 1.1 meters onto the tracks at the same time that a train was pulling into the station. The train came to a stop before reaching the boy, who had dived into the open space under the platform. The boy suffered minor injuries from the fall.

East Japan Railway Company (JR) officials say collisions between people walking while looking at their mobile phones has increased steadily the past three years.

On June 10, JR placed "Don’t use your phones or look at game devices while walking" posters in 520 stations in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Station announcements also ask people not to use mobile phones or handheld game players while walking. The mobile phone safety awareness campaign will run until July 31.

 

 

People walking while looking at their smartphone in Shinjuku station in Tokyo People walk and looking at their mobile phones in Shibuya station in Tokyo

 

photos: Shinjuku station, Tokyo Shibuya station, Tokyo

Surveillance cameras in Japan watch your private places

Security cameras for a safe Japan

madarao kogen hot springs Japan changing room security camera Surveillance camera on top of soft drink vending machine in Japan Surveillance camera on a Saitama bus in Tokyo, Japan
above (left) Security camera in hot springs changing room at a hotel at Madarao Kogen hot springs, Nagano Prefecture Japan. (center) On a vending machine. (right) Surveillance camera in a bus.
 

No surveillance camera in kokugikan sumo hall September 2009 Surveillance camera in kokugikan sumo hall September 2009
above (left) 2009 - No surveillance camera in Kokugikan sumo hall. (right) 2012 - Surveillance camera in Kokugikan sumo hall.

Security cameras at the sumo hall

The Japan Sumo Association setup ‘‘mob-cams” surveillance cameras in the Aichi-ken Taiikukan arena in Nagoya for the July 2010 sumo tournament. The effort is to prevent gangsters (yakuza) from attending sumo matches.

Organized crime links to sumo were exposed in late 2009 and again in early 2010.

Gangsters were reportedly extorting money from the sumo wrestler Kotomitsuki, the highest ranked Japanese wrestler at the time.

 

Tickets usually given to corporate sponsors had been obtained by the Yamaguchi-gumi crime syndicate and gang members were seen seated ringside at tournaments. The gangsters wanted to be visible on TV broadcasts to raise the spirits of their colleagues watching sumo tournaments from prison cells.

Surveillance cameras were also installed at Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan sumo hall before the 2010 Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament. The JSA is cooperating with the police in the use of the security cameras.

Bus cameras in Kyoto

Surveillance camera on city bus in Kyoto Japan Surveillance camera on city bus in Kyoto Japan watches for illegally parked carsabove Surveillance camera on city bus in Kyoto, Japan

Surveillance cameras are installed on 20 city buses in Kyoto. The bus cameras record video at the bus stops. Later, the video is checked for cars illegally parked at the bus stops. Officials are especially concerned about illegal parking at bus stops around Kyoto station. Repeat offenders are reported to the police.

Three cameras are attached to the outside of the buses and two are installed inside the buses. The camera system is explained in a sticker on the bus exteriors.

Some buses in Saitama, Tokyo, and Fukuoka Prefecture also have cameras installed to record video of bus stops.

 

Police have a cam-van

The Tokyo Metropolitan Police have a vehicle equipped with security cameras. Three of the cameras are mounted on an extendable arm that can capture video in 360 degrees from a maximum height of 6.7 meters. Those cameras can recognized people’s faces up to 150 meters away. The 2-ton police cam-truck also carries 9 portable security cameras.

Tokyo Metropolitan Police mobile surveillance camera vehicle Police mobile surveillance cameras truck in Tokyo Japan

Video can be transfered to each police station and police headquarters by a satellite communication link on the truck. Video footage is saved for 7 days and then erased The surveillance truck is used in high-crime areas in Tokyo.

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Real life in Tokyo following Fukushima and the earthquake

Pedestrians in Tokyo, Japan March 25, 2011Shoppers in Tokyo, March 25, 2011

 

We’ve been having some troubles here in Japan.  Maybe you’ve heard. I’ve written some articles about the earthquake and the coverage of the tsunami and the Fukushima nuclear reactors. You can read my reports here:

March 25, 2011
Op-Ed: Tokyo OK, foreign media’s sensational coverage shameful

March 16, 2011
US govt recommends 80 Km Fukushima evac zone; currently 30km

March 15, 2011
US agrees with reactor response ambassador in Tokyo says

March 15, 2011
Higher than normal radiation detected along Japan Pacific coast

March 14, 2011
Shielding possibly damaged by explosion at Fukushima No.2 Tuesday

March 14, 2011
Op-Ed: The earthquake aftermath in Tokyo

March 13, 2011
Rolling Blackouts Begin Monday in Tokyo

March 12, 2011
How I survived the Japanese earthquake

Appliance store sells electric car

Electric car sold inYamada Denki retail stores inTokyo

 

Appliance and electronics retail chain Yamada Denki has begun selling an electric car at some of its retail stores. Yamada has partnered with Mitsubishi Motors to sell the Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric vehicle. Yamada is the first household appliances store in Japan to sell an electric car.

The i-MiEV electric vehicle is on sale at 17 Yamada Denki stores in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The car is on display inside each of the 17 stores and there is a full-time car salesman on hand at each outlet. These Yamada stores also sell and install the vehicle-charging equipment and offer complete “Smart House” solar photovoltaic solutions.

Owners of Mitsubishi electric car imiex in Japan

 

The i-MiEV has been on the market since July 2009, and about 3,000 of the vehicles have been sold in Japan.

 

Yamada Denki Online shopping

 

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Electric car charging point in JapanElectric vehicle charging station in Japan

 

Yamada Denki electic and electronics appliance store in Japan Elderly owner of Mitsubishi Japanese electric car imiev in Japan

 

photos:  Charge point (R)Charge point (L)

Draft Beer Kegs on a Plane

ANA flight attendants demonstrate new draft beer keg tap for in-flight beerAll Nippon Airways says it is the first airline in the world to offer in-flight draft beer from a keg.

A traditional beer keg uses a high-pressure carbon dioxide bottle which is prohibited by law on flights.

ANA sponsored development of a special beer keg dispenser that does not use a high-pressure gas cylinder.

The new device uses the pressure from carbon dioxide gas captured from dry ice. The dry ice also keeps the beer cool so a power-supply unit and refrigerator are not needed.

 

How CO2 draft beer keg tap for in-flight beer works All Nippon Airways

 

Can of beer served on All Nippon Airlines flightAll Nippon Airways started offering this real draft beer on domestic flights for the first time on July 20.

The brand of the beer varies according to the route.

The price is JPY 1000 per 400 milliliter glass, including a dry snack.

Depending on the aircraft, 20-40 glasses of beer will be offered per flight.

Train Gropers Grabbed in Week-Long Cop Crusade

High school girls hand out anti-groper information at a train station in JapanSeventy-seven gropers (chikan) were arrested on Tokyo commuter trains during a crackdown by the Japan National Police Agency. During the April 15 - 21 effort, 120 officers from the NPA and the Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa prefectural police rode train routes known to attract molesters.

Six people were caught on the Keio Line and JR Chuo Line, the highest number of all the train lines. The JR Saikyo Line, notable for frequent reports of groping, installed security cameras on some trains last year. Five people were caught on the Saikyo Line during the April crackdown. All of the perpetrators were caught in cars without security cameras.

 

Security cameras installed on commuter some trains in Tokyo Police hope to stop groping on commuter trains in Japan

 

Twenty-six of the 77 victims were high school students and fourteen people were university students. Forty of the victims were between 15 and 19 years of age. Forty-two of the arrests occurred between 7 a.m and 9 a.m.

JR poster zero tolerance for gropersFifty-eight of those arrested were charged under the "public nuisances" law. Four of the perps were charged with using a hidden camera to take secret photos in the train. Three were arrested on charges of forced obscene acts in the train car, and one man was charged with indecent exposure in the car.

Eleven people were charged with taking indecent photos of passers-by on escalators and on the stairs on station premises.

Twenty-nine of the 77 had previously been caught molesting train passengers. In one incident, while an officer obtained a description of a suspect from one victim, the officer saw the suspect in the first crime grope another victim in the same car. The suspect was arrested.

The NPA will post police officers on trains to crack down on gropers who target particular victims or stalk women after they get off the train. "If you get groped on a train, please tell the nearest police officer," an NPA spokesman said.

 

High school judo team girl catches groper on train in JapanIn one groping arrest in February, a 16-year-old girl who was fondled on the JR Takasaki Line grabbed the suspect’s hand, hauled him off the train at the next station, and handed him over to police. The girl is a member of her high school judo team. The 21-year-old perpetrator was charged with public nuisance.

 

Train Molester Man PC computer game for Window Japanese

 

Chikan Densha Otoko 2 Molester Trainman game (Windows PC)

Airline Gives Women Exclusive Toilet

ANA press release announces women only lavatoryAll Nippon Airways has designated one lavatory for exclusive use by women on most international flights.

Men may use the women-only toilet only when there are few female passengers and in an emergency. Men can also use the ladies-only rest room before taking off and landing before the fasten-seatbelt sign is displayed, and when there is an urgent need due to illness. An announcement about a given flight’s toilet-usage is made at the start of the flight.

A 2007 ANA online survey found women do not like using unisex lavatories because men sometimes leave the seat up. Women also expressed displeasure about waiting in line for the toilet with men after airline meals.

ANA says 70% of male passengers it surveyed say they did not mind the ladies-only washrooms, and some men approved because it means less time waiting for women to finish using the toilet. ANA said demand for a lavatory exclusively for women is especially high among passengers taking long flights.
Women-only toilet sign on ANA flightAll Nippon Airlines ladies only lavatory

Cats Eye Stationmaster Posts

Tama-chan cat station master in Japan Tama-chan cat station master in Japan Station cat promoted

Tama-chan, the cat stationmaster of a rural Japan train station, has attained the position of Operating Officer.

The stray cat was found in front of Kishi Station on the Wakayama Electric Railway Co. Kishikawa Line in 2007. Named Tama-chan, the kitty was offered the position of Stationmaster and held that post from 2007 until being promoted to Super Station Master in April 2008.

With the appointment as corporate executive Tama-chan becomes the first cat in the world to hold an executive post of a railroad corporation, a company official said.

Tama-chan, 10, will continue to perform stationmaster duties in addition to its responsibilities as Operating Officer. Those additional duties have not yet been determined.

The cat is responsible for an increase in passenger numbers. The company plans to rebuild Kishi Station into the shape of a cat’s face this summer.

Marron Chestnut the stationmaster dog in Japan Funeral held for Marron Chestnut the stationmaster dog in Japan memorial service held for dead Marron station master dog in Japan

 Station dog cremated

Maron, the 9-year-old Yorkshire terrier stationmaster for the Iwate Galaxy Railway Company died the evening of August 29, 2009. The cause of death was bronchitis. The dog had served as Station Chief at Oku-Nakayama Kogen Station, in Ichinohemachi since September, 2000. A funeral service for Maron was held on September 12, 2009.

Analysis

Rena the blogging cat stars in Wii game in Japan. Dr. Evil expands into Japan railways?

 

With Tama-chan promoted, and Maron out of the way, cats are poised to pounce on stations throughout Japan. Cat-blogger and star of the Wii game Sukeban Shachou Rena Wii, "Rena" is likely to take over the position formerly held by Maron. Rena is currently CEO of Cat Queen Inc.

It is rumored CQI is a subsidiary of Virtucon Corporation. Following the mysterious disappearance of CEO "Number 2", leadership of Virtucon was assumed by "Mr. Wigglesworth". Police suspect Wigglesworth was involved in the Number 2 case and the sudden death of Maron. Police also link Wigglesworth to the quick promotion of Tama-chan. "We believe this Mr. Wigglesworth cat is the mastermind of these plots," said one police official.

Station employees had originally protested the latest promotion of Tama-Chan, but they denied they were threatened. "A hairless cat wearing a thick leather collar and flu mask did come to see us late one night after the last train had passed", said one employee who refused to be identified. "But the feline was very polite and did not hiss or scratch us," the employee said.

Police continue to investigate possible foul play among the cats. "It is highly unusual to reach a management position in such a short time. Especially for a cat," the police official said.

Virtucon Corporation did not respond to inquiries. In addition to assigning cats to oversee train stations in Japan, it is believed Virtucon Corporation desires to take over the world.