Typical signs of drunkenness on train platforms may now be detected via automated security cameras at Kyobashi station in Osaka, as part of West Japan Railway’s efforts to prevent accidents.
The company’s new system, installed this week, will use 46 cameras to automatically search for signs of intoxication and alert attendants if necessary, a spokesman told Japan Real Time. West Japan Railway said that in addition to staggering, clues include remaining on the platform for an extended time for no apparent reason, and sleeping on benches. Many drunken waiting passengers remained motionless for a long time before trotting quickly toward the train or tracks, the railway said.
In the year beginning in April 2013, there were 221 cases in which passengers on platforms were hit by trains, either by getting too close to the edge of the platform or falling off, according to the government. About 60% of those hit were drunk at the time.
The camera system is currently only in place at Kyobashi station, which is located near one of Osaka’s entertainment districts, but the company will consider installing similar systems at other stations in the future, the spokesman said. West Japan Railway said the system won’t be used to identify people in any way.
The Wall Street Journal/Aug. 13, 2015