On Tuesday afternoon, a woman was trapped underneath a train on the JR Yamanote Line at Tokyo’s Shibuya Station. As in an incident on July 22, a huge number of people gathered around the particular train car and the commuters quickly banded together to push the train away from the platform so that the woman could be freed.
The woman, reportedly in her 60s, cried out for help from beneath the train and was lying prostrate between the rails of the track. According to initial reports, it is believed that the elderly woman had attempted to kill herself by jumping in front of the train. After the crowd gathered, an announcement was made over the station’s public address system informing commuters that a woman was trapped beneath the train and asked for their help in pushing the carriage back far enough for station staff to be able to help her. With the help of the crowd that gathered, the woman who attempted suicide was freed from beneath the train car and taken away to the hospital for treatment. Reports suggest that the accident, which occurred just before the evening rush hour, affected more than 26,000 commuters along the line.
In July earlier this year, Japanese commuters have earlier shown their leaning towards helping strangers in need. On July 22, around forty passengers at the JR Minami-Urawa station, just outside Tokyo, helped push a 32-ton train carriage to free a woman trapped in the platform gap during rush hour on a Monday. They were able to pull the woman in her 30s out from under the platform, safe and uninjured. Everyone in the station had applauded the “rescue effort” at that time, and operations resumed, with just a slight delay of 8 minutes to the entire Keihin Tohoku Line.