Japan Govt mulls installing security cameras mandatorily on trains

Japan: Following a knife assault inside a train in Tokyo in October, the Japanese government is considering ordering railway operators across the country to install surveillance cameras in newly built trains, according to officials from the transport ministry.

According to sources, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism is considering revising a law on disaster preventive measures that advises operators to take safety precautions to prevent fires, but security cameras are not currently required. The decision was taken after the government sought input from major train operators, including the Japan Railways group, on security measures.

In the case of the October 31 attack, the train's operator, Keio Corp., stated that the crew was unaware of what had occurred until passengers pressed emergency buttons in various points throughout the carriage. There were no surveillance cameras to help the personnel understand what was going on.

Furthermore, following an emergency stop, some doors closed, and many people had to escape by climbing out of train windows onto the platform, as the train stopped slightly behind the proper stopping point. The transport ministry and railway operators are also investigating how to operate emergency buttons and levers in the event of an emergency, according to officials.

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