Japan Remembers Those Lost in Deadly 2005 Train Wreck

Pool photo / The Yomiuri Shimbun
Attendees observe a moment of silence at 9:45 a.m. Tuesday at the Inori no Mori memorial facility set up at the site of a 2005 train derailment in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture.

Tuesday marked 18 years since a train derailment in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, killed 106 passengers in addition to the driver and injured 562 others.

A memorial service was held at the Inori no Mori, a facility that was set up at the site of the accident that occurred on April 25, 2005, at around 9:18 a.m.

The ceremony was organized by West Japan Railway Co., which operated the train that derailed on the JR Fukuchiyama Line, and attended by 285 people, including the bereaved families and passengers injured in the accident.

“We pledge that each and every one of our employees deeply reflect on the accident and work to build a safe railroad system,” JR West President Kazuaki Hasegawa said at the ceremony.

Among the bereaved family members was a 68-year-old man from Kobe whose younger son, then 18, died in the crash.

“Almost as many years have passed as my son lived,” he said. “It’s still painful no matter how many years pass by.”