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JR Hokkaido Asahikawa Station is offering a two-day package tour featuring mileage on lines the 711 series has run over the past 40+ years. Oct. 5 will see a trainset in original JNR colors running Asahikawa to Otaru via Sapporo, and then down to Muroran. After an overnight stay in Muroran, the train will run to Sapporo and travel on the Sassho Line, and then reverse and return to Asahikawa on the Hakodate Main Line. As of the end of August, the number of 711 series workings has been cut in half, and total retirement is scheduled for this coming spring. https://www.jrhokkaido.co.jp/press/2014/140820-2.pdf
bikkuri bahn posted a topic in Japan Rail: Pictures & VideosIt was reported by the Hokkaido Shimbun last year that JR Hokkaido would be retiring the remaining 711 series emus by the March timetable revision, one year earlier than previously announced. However, that time has passed, and units are still running to date. A trip to Teine Station this evening confirmed this, with the usual 3+3 711 series on the 18:16 Teine-Iwamizawa stopper. Schedules posted on the station platforms and dated 3/15/2014 also still have notations for 711 series services. It appears the akaden still have a few months more operation, at least. Winter scenes of 711 series on the Sassho Line:
This is a day or two old now, but JR Hokkaido President Nojima said to the MLIT committee of the upper house of the Diet (doing my best here, not really sure about this ) that JRH will buy 28 new express DMUs and 60 new commuter EMUs by 2016. These will replace some old cars as well as provide new capacity. It will be decided later exactly how many cars will be scrapped, and what lines/areas will get the new equipment. One specific thing mentioned is that some of the new cars will be 733s to replace the 48 711s in service, all of which are to be retired by the end of this year. http://www.hokkaido-np.co.jp/news/donai/507045.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/711_series