Sumida River fireworks canceled by storm


The Sumida River fireworks show, one of the biggest in the nation, was canceled Saturday for the first time in 35 years by a thunderstorm.

“It was cloudy at first, but strong winds started to blow after the first 10 minutes and then it turned to thunderstorm,” said Yuya Kawanaka, 18, who traveled from Wako, Saitama Prefecture, to see the show, which fizzled after the first 30 minutes.

It was the show’s first cancelation since 1978, when it was named the Sumida River Fireworks Festival, the organizers said.

An estimated 790,000 people were expected to throng central Tokyo to watch the more than 20,000 rounds light up the sky from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

  • Joao pires

    So it will be postponed to another day? I was there at Asakusa Bridge last night and I couldnt see anything. I would like to know if we will have the chance to see it today maybe.

    • Yosemite_Steve

      i think if it were rescheduled they would say that. cancelled means done, over. I was there on the bridge from near the start. We saw a pretty good show from ‘point 1’ launching area before the rain got heavy and soaked us to the skin – probably most of the fireworks there were used up.

      I wish JT would describe how screwed up the transportation out of the area was. We waited for about 45 minutes outside Toei Asakusa station. Not one person in the crowd was making progress actually getting into the station. We had been directed there by a cop. There were a bunch of cops standing around right in front of the station but not one came back into the crowd to say anything about what was going on or giving any good advice like “better walk to Ueno”. We finally got out after finally getting near enough to hear what the cops were saying in front of the station. We walked to Ueno which is OK, just would have been nicer if the cops had been telling people to do that before we got stuck into a jam near the station entrance. They do this every year, I don’t understand why they don’t have better transportation (like rinji bus service to Ueno) available to get the almost 1 million spectators out of the area. Or even properly direct people.

  • Hugothester

    I was there under a bridge with some friends, I got completly wet and we ended dinning at a Chinese restaurant, it was a shame, but a funny night.