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JR East performing test runs on Joban line through exclusion zone


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Woah, that voice over lady was a little crazy.  It was like the Japanese version of Alvin the chipmunk.


5 car trains, a little optimistic considering most of the population hasn't moved back.  Unless just for testing purposes?

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I suspect the voiceover is a computer generated voice, I've heard similar on other videos from Japan. Presumably some people are very nervous about using their own voice to narrate!

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Good news: YouTuber (and JNS Forum member) ayokoi just posted a video of the first revenue run from Tomioka to Haranomachi:



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Gami also did a video of the first Hitachi limited express from Ueno to Sendai


They used the Oh Ueno Station melody, which I don't think is common practice? Not sure.

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Question: I wonder why JR East uses the E531 instead of the E721 train sets between Tomioka and Haranomachi? Wouldn't be just easier to extend the E721 service from Haranomachi instead? 🤔

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The E531 runs from Iwaki to Tomioka (and now Haranomachi) at least, that was the case when I visited the region for the first time.

Edited by Yavianice
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It's probably because of where they're based. 

The E531s are based at Katsuta and Oku depots (Tokyo) but are designed to operate over the whole Joban line, so they can go back to the depot from far away spots like Haranomachi. The E721 probably isn't designed for that, and obviously can't be based in Tokyo (AC only). They're also based in Sendai and they probably want to keep them reasonably close to their home depot. Service may also not be needed past haranomachi, so they just use E531s because they're meant to be used for long distance.


A lot of that is speculation, and not cold hard fact...

Edited by RossDensha
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It was very interesting to see the different stages of re-construction in progress, and the big concrete embankment wall that had clearly slumped during the earthquake but is still apparently structurally sound enough.

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