November 16th. Japan has been promoting the process of unmanned stations in recent years. Over the past 20 years, unmanned stations have increased by 10%. According to data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, as of March this year (2020), nearly half of all stations in Japan have been Unmanned has been realized. However, due to the absence of staff on duty, some people with disabilities claimed that it was inconvenient to get on and off the bus. The Japanese government is currently working to resolve related issues.
According to Japan’s “Asahi Shimbun” report, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism recently announced the number of stations and unmanned stations counted by major railway companies. When statistics began in 2002, there were 9,514 stations in Japan, of which 43.3% were unmanned stations, or 4,120. As of March this year, the total number of stations has not changed much, at 9,465, and the number of unmanned stations increased slightly to 4,564, accounting for 48.2% of the total.
In terms of prefectures, as of March this year, the area with the highest proportion of unmanned stations was Kochi, at 93.5%. Over 50% of the unmanned stations in 30 prefectures in Japan, such as Hokkaido, Tohoku, Shikoku, and Kyushu, account for more than 50%. Areas with relatively low unmanned stations include Saitama (3%), Tokyo (9.9%), Osaka (16%), etc. There are 19 stations in Okinawa Prefecture, all of which have people.
According to Japanese media analysis, the increase in unmanned stations is due to the serious problem of declining birthrates and aging population in Japan, as well as the influx of population into cities, which has caused local railway operations to be in trouble. With the increase of unmanned stations, many safety issues have also arisen. Although various railway companies have made relevant plans to remotely operate unmanned stations from other stations, and dispatch staff from other stations if necessary, many people with disabilities still claim: “In order to get help, you must Contact the station in advance. Isn’t this discrimination?”
At present, although the stations in many large cities in Japan are divided into unmanned stations, there are actually people during the day and unmanned management at different times. Such stations are constantly increasing.