The total number of passengers on Japan Railways trains during the country’s Bon summer holiday period plunged 76 percent from a year before, amid the coronavirus epidemic, six JR regional railway operators said Tuesday.

The total in the period from Aug. 7 to Monday came to 3,549,000 passengers, the fewest since 1990, when such statistics became available.

Both East Japan Railway Co., or JR East, and West Japan Railway Co., or JR West, saw the number of Bon holiday passengers down 77 percent.

Passenger numbers were down 76 percent at Central Japan Railway Co., or JR Central, 72 percent at Kyushu Railway Co., or JR Kyushu, 67 percent at Shikoku Railway Co., or JR Shikoku, and 62 percent at Hokkaido Railway Co., or JR Hokkaido.

While the six companies started a campaign to stimulate travel demand in late July, many fireworks events, festivals, concerts and other events have been canceled to prevent coronavirus infections.

“We’re facing a tough situation as people continue to refrain from going out,” a JR East official said.

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