OSAKA (Kyodo) Relatives of the 107 people killed or injured in the deadly 2005 train derailment in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, took part in a ceremony Saturday marking the fourth anniversary of the gruesome accident.
At 9:18 a.m., the time when the speeding train derailed and rammed into a condominium on April 25, 2005, a moment of silent prayer was held to honor everyone who died in the accident except the driver, who was trained by West Japan Railway Co. (JR West), which planned the ceremony.
The accident on the JR West Fukuchiyama Line killed 107 people and injured 562 when the train jumped the tracks while speeding on a curve and piled into the corner of the condominium complex.
JR West President Masao Yamazaki apologized for the accident at the ceremony, which was held at a public hall.
“In a matter of seconds, we ripped apart happy families that should have lasted a long time,” Yamazaki said, adding that JR West is making efforts to secure higher safety by adopting measures that analyze the risk of accidents beforehand.
Some of the victims’ kin spoke at the ceremony.
“Time has never made me forget about the accident,” said Hiroshi Ueda, 54, who lost his second son Masaki, who was 18 at the time of the accident. “For the past four years, I was filled with sadness and despair . . . Don’t repeat such a tragic accident ever again,” Ueda said in tears.
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