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A train on a Yokohama subway line ran off the tracks shortly after departure early Thursday morning, but no injuries were reported among the around 130 passengers, its operator said.
The first train of the day on the Yokohama Municipal Subway Blue Line had just left Shimoiida Station for Azamino Station when the first five of the six carriages derailed around 5:25 a.m. after running over a temporary turnout that had been left on top of the tracks.
The train driver felt the impact shortly after departure and immediately hit the emergency brakes, causing the train to stop around 40 meters away. It was the first derailment of a passenger service since the municipal subway line opened in 1972, according to the Yokohama municipal government.
Passengers were evacuated through the emergency exit in the last carriage and walked to Shimoiida Station. Blue Line services were temporarily suspended following the derailment and many commuters rushed to a nearby station on the Sotetsu Line.
The temporary turnout was used to move a maintenance vehicle between the main track and a temporary track during overnight work. Staff did not realize it had been left on the tracks as a warning light had incorrectly given the all-clear.
"We are sorry to have caused trouble to many passengers. The incident was likely triggered by human error and we will try to prevent a recurrence," said Hirotoshi Shiro, head of Yokohama city's transportation bureau.
This article first appeared on japantoday.com
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