• Kyodo, Staff Report


Three people in their 80s and 90s died over a two-month period last year after they fell from the veranda of their rooms at a nursing home in Kawasaki, according to the municipal government and the facility.

The city instructed the facility, S Amiyu Kawasaki Saiwai-cho, to launch an investigation to determine the cause and not to let such incidents happen again. Police are looking into whether there was anything suspicious about the deaths.

The company that operates the facility, Sekiwa Support System, said it believes the deaths were accidental and the veranda railings were solid.

“We take the accidents seriously and will take steps not to let them happen again,” the company said.

According to the city and the company, an 87-year-old man who lived on the fourth floor fell Nov. 4, a 86-year-old woman on the same floor fell Dec. 9 and a 96-year-old woman on the sixth floor fell on Dec. 31. They all apparently fell to their deaths early in the morning, as calls were made to the police between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m.

Workers at the facility found the bodies after noticing open windows in the victims’ rooms and checking the units, and subsequently made emergency calls to the police.

A man in his 20s worked the night shift on all three days, but he has since quit, according to a media report.

No suicide notes were found. All of the units were single-occupancy and the veranda railings are about 120-cm high. Three workers basically work the night shifts.

The facility, which opened in November 2011, has six floors and 80 units.

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