JR West driver took photos of 2 women passengers while operating train at 120 kph

KANAZAWA —

A West Japan Railway Co (JR West) driver secretly took photos of two female passengers with his mobile phone camera through the rear window of the driver’s cabin while he was operating the train at 120 kilometers per hour, JR admitted Monday.

The incident first came to light last Saturday at a meeting for the victims and families affected by the fatal 2005 Amagasaki rail crash. According to JR West, the 28-year-old driver from the JR West Kanazawa branch was operating a train on the Kosei line, and took photos of the women between Makino and Nagahara stations on the morning of Aug 21.

At the time, the train was traveling at 120 kilometers per hour, and the driver took his eyes off the controls and tracks for about 7 or 8 seconds while taking the photos.

The driver was quoted as saying: “When I went to shut the curtain behind my seat, these two attractive women caught my eye, so I took their photo.” The women noticed the camera flash and complained to the train conductor at Nagahara station.

The driver told officials this is the first time he has ever done such a thing, and that the photos have already been deleted.

JR West said it is currently launching an investigation into the incident, and promised to treat the act very seriously when all the details are revealed.

News reports

  • 0

    societymike

    laugh out loud hahaha... and this.. "they have already been deleted"

  • 0

    bamboohat

    and promised to treat the act very seriously when all the details are revealed.

    exactly what other details are they hoping will "be revealed"?

  • 0

    chotto

    You couldn't make it up.

  • 0

    Sebaschan

    it's the womens fault...crystal clear... their names and addresses should be made public... ;)

  • 0

    thepro

    Japanese guys have some serious sexual issues

  • 0

    buggerlugs

    Shouldn't this be a crime based on proffesional negligence? A cut in pay and a spanking sorry suspenion coming me thinks.

  • 0

    gogogo

    thepro: Agreed but mainly no common sense

  • 0

    dr_jones

    Make the first carriage a 'man-only-car'!

  • 0

    TokyoLurker

    too bad , they are "for your eyes only" and camera too is an exception, (笑)

  • 0

    tamesu

    They really watch their women....

  • 0

    tokyochris

    I hear Aso has a simple solution to this, and the groping problems... ban women from trains!

  • 0

    telecasterplayer

    He should not have shirked his duties. But that must have been a purdy gal..

  • 0

    Fadamor

    Perhaps they'll think to ask this question while they're investigating: The pictures are bad enough, but why are you adjusting your curtains AT 120 KPH!?!? Shouldn't that be something that's done BEFORE the train starts moving?

    Another thought... His cell phone not only has a camera, but a FLASH?! I wonder what kind of battery life he gets out of that phone?

  • 0

    JEC81

    @Fadamor, where are you from? Most CP in Japan have flashes..

  • 0

    touch

    im sure there is more to this story , maybe they were filming a Soft on Demand video... and he was the camera man

  • 0

    KingSaint

    Its not like he is going to swerve and hit something. The girls must have been really hot for him to risk taking their pics.

  • 0

    yomuri

    Japanese guys have some serious sexual issues

    this is a rather sweeping statement.

  • 0

    Mittsu

    Leave aside the stupidity of driver taking attention away from his driving, what is the obsession in Jaapn with taking pictures? What exactly does one do with photos of 2 random attractive women?

  • 0

    isthistheend

    Were the girls mooning the driver?

  • 0

    norinrad21

    Another day in J ville

  • 0

    Altria

    This is disgraceful negligence. What would he have done if a cat ran out onto the tracks?

  • 0

    nemoflow

    "What exactly does one do with photos of 2 random attractive women?"

    Surely you can not be THAT naive.

  • 0

    KallyPygous

    This driver is completely off the rails. I bet he was brought up on the wrong side of the tracks.

  • 0

    chuckers

    What exactly does one do with photos of 2 random attractive women?

    Uhh...don't go there.

  • 0

    Hurtado

    hah this guy is a legend, hope he gets his wages increased.

  • 0

    Hurtado

    This is disgraceful negligence. What would he have done if a cat ran out onto the tracks?

    Same thing any guy does when a cat jumps infront of your car lol, speed up and grab 50 points!

  • 0

    SimondB

    Come on people get realistic. He is in a highly techno train that can operate probably for the whole journey without the driver never mind the few seconds he takes out to shoot photos of two women (what was their problem anyway).

    Think about flying across the ocean to your home land. Really think that your pilot is staring steadidly out of the window to avoid collisions?

  • 0

    mindovermatter

    Think about flying across the ocean to your home land. Really think that your pilot is staring steadidly out of the window to avoid collisions? is actions

    I can't say I am really surprised by his actions, actually I am more surprised he wasn't caught photographing and exposing himself through the window, while driving the train...

    But this isn't him driving the family car, or joy-riding on his bicycle, this is him operating a 1,000,000 plus pound killing machine. Just a year ago, 33 people died in L.A. when that driver was texting...

    And planes are a different story altogether... talking apples and oranges.... For you to make that same comparison, you would need to specify that the pilots weren't at the controls or paying attention during take or landing... I guarantee you, no aircrew (pilot / co-pilot) would ever be texting or taking pictures during take off or landing....

    During cruise / flight there's a thing called TCAS, and thanks to a couple Jal planes a few years ago, and several stained pairs of Japanese underware, they now know what to do to avoid other aircraft.

  • 0

    Potsu

    What's wrong with this ? It's Japan,isn't it basically accepted culture here ?

  • 0

    TokyoRoughGuy

    I don't see a problem with what he did.

  • 0

    Disillusioned

    I guess it gets pretty lonely sitting at the controls of a train. Driving trains is one of the highest stressed jobs. It's right up there with air traffic controllers.

  • 0

    herefornow

    TokyoRoughGuy -- huh? If my math is even close, this train traveled about 600 feet while this guy was getting his rocks off shooting candids of these two gals. And you don't think that's a problem?

  • 0

    Farmboy

    After this, there will be a notation in the handbook to slow the train to 70kph when taking pictures.

  • 0

    PleasureGelf

    What would he have done if a cat ran out onto the tracks?

    Exactly, he wouldn't have time to swerve, or as the last resort, make the train jump over the poor kitty.

    If he had really put anyone's life at risk he should lose his job quicker than you can say 'click'. But while he's paid to stare ahead and not ogle attractive passengers I bet there are long stretches which don't demand his full undivided attention.

  • 0

    viking68

    Yea, they need a silly yellow poster on the train stations saying "do it at home" or something like that.

    Really, this does remind me of the fool texting kids on the train in California. He missed a light and killed a lot of people. Train drivers should not be allowed to have a cell phone, period. They should have a business line associated with the train line.

    I can only imagine all the trouble a cell phone can cause, web-surfing, texting, phone-sex.... Ban them for drivers.

  • 0

    jojo_in_japan

    Why the heck was he using a flash? .... IDIOT.

  • 0

    Cicada

    JR West said it is currently launching an investigation into the incident, and promised to treat the act very seriously when all the details are revealed.

    They will make the driver clean toilets for a week.

    Too bad the driver deleted the photos, though, because they would be a big hit.

  • 0

    KaptainKichigai

    Who cares? so he took a phot of some pretty girls. Maybe he is an artist in his spare time and the muses were upon him. Perhaps a fine sketch or painting would have come from his photos. Dont be so quick to jump to the perverse.

  • 0

    Cicada

    No one should be taking pictures of others without permission, let alone an idiot that is supposed to be driving a speeding train. Highly unlikely that this is the first time he did it. More likely it is the first time the women got mad enough to report him.

    However, I'm sure he will be a better train driver after his week of toilet cleaning has passed.

  • 0

    Badge213

    ust a year ago, 33 people died in L.A. when that driver was texting...

    Now comparing american trains with Japanese trains is apples and oranges. The train in LA doesn't run on ATC/ATS systems, it was all manual control there.

  • 0

    MapleG

    Seems like very effective multi-tasking to me :)

  • 0

    jigjapan

    no problem for that...besides, lucky for the girls since they were noticed...

  • 0

    Icewind007

    I think the issue was more about the women being bothered than there being danger for the train. I mean, a conductor can only do so much if there is a problem, it takes a good while to stop the train and if someone gets in the way, the only thing he can do is report how much splat the person made on the train... it's not like he was driving a truck.

    Why the heck was he using a flash? .... IDIOT.

    That flashed through my mind too...

    Exactly, he wouldn't have time to swerve, or as the last resort, make the train jump over the poor kitty.

    Your awesome sarcasm reflects my point 8)

  • 0

    KitsuneYoukai

    Icewind007...

    There may not be a gurantee but if it was something he could have seen coming he may have other options to have reduced the damage. So, yes! Texting or taking photos; anything that takes their eyes from where they should be is a liability that frankly, shouldn't be allowed. I doubt the violator wants to look into the faces of victims family. If they do their job on safety's side and a tragedy happens at least they are conscious free.

  • 0

    sharky1

    1. It is not legal to take a person's photo without their permission...unless you are the government with video cams up all over the place.

    2. What did he plan to do with those pictures???

    3. His position is for safety, and he obviously wasn't doing his job if he was doing a photo shoot of J Birds.

  • 0

    auntplum

    Oh goody! He deleted the photos!
    For those that think it's 'no big thing' - could this be yet another 'only in Japan' moment..? (When gaijin trivialise offences committed by Japanese which we would crucify someone for back home). Shameful.

  • 0

    Cicada

    Auntplum, I agree.

    Can a clerk or salesman in a store freely take pictures of customers he thinks is cute? Of course not, even when safety is not an issue.

    JR has rules that outlaw what the driver did. The driver knows those rules. He should be fired, end of story.

    But most likely he will be "punished" by being made to clean toilets for a while. Then the pervert will be back driving trains.

    Interesting they do not even disclose the driver's name. Sure, he is an immature idiot, but is he a minor? Why are they protecting him? Who is his father? Those are the questions...

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