New E5 Series bullet train may play role in recovery

Early this month a new train began its first run in Tokyo, according to the Asahi Shimbun. The E5 Series Hayabusa super express train stands out from other Shinkansen (bullet) trains, by besting them in both speed, and likeness to a duck. These new trains will go a maximum of 300 kph ( about 186 mph) along the Tohoku Shinkansen line, and even faster in the next few years. This brand new line of trains is also the first of the Shinkansen to offer first-class seating.

The E5 Series will run along the Tohoku line.  The Tohoku train line takes passengers from Tokyo, all the way up to the Tohoku (northeast) region of Honshu (the main island in Japan), as seen on the train line map below.

The Tohoku line is highlighted in red. Image captured from the JR East website.

Returning to partial service four days after the earthquake, this train line has been on a special schedule since. The Tohoku line is still closed for service between the Kuroiso and Ichinoseki stations as of today yesterday.Some might think that the opening of a new bullet train service just before an earthquake hits a large portion of its targeted service area is bad timing, but this could actually be the perfect time. Why?

The rebuilding process is going to take a number of years, and although population in these hard-hit areas will take a hit, this reigon could come back stronger than ever, with many business trips to the region to oversee recontruction, growth, and other new business opportunities. It will certainly be interesting to see how this new train will impact business in the Tohoku region.


Do you have experience with the Shinkansen service in Japan? Do you have questions? Please comment below, your thoughts count.


To view the referred to article from the Asahi Shimbun, click here.