Cameras installed at Japanese train station can automatically identify drunken commuters

By midian182
Aug 14, 2015
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  1. Driving while intoxicated isn’t the only cause of alcohol-related transportation deaths in Japan. Over half of the 221 passengers who were killed by trains in the country last year were drunk. In an effort to aid these inebriated commuters, Kyobashi station in Osaka is installing 46 cameras that automatically scan for signs of drunkenness and alert staff to intervene if necessary.

    West Japan Railway said that in addition to spotting passengers who are stumbling around the station, the cameras are also programmed to detect commuters who stand on the platform for extended periods of time without boarding any trains, and anyone who decides to take a nap on the floor or a bench.

    Once someone is marked out as being at risk due to intoxication, a station attendant is alerted who will check if the passenger requires any assistance. The staff member will also make sure the person in question doesn't walk off the edge of the platform into the path of one of Japan’s 366mph bullet trains.

    60 percent of those killed by trains in the year to April 2014 were found to have been drunk at the time of their deaths. Many of the victims died by either getting too close to the edge of the platform or from falling onto the tracks.

    If the system does work in reducing the number of deaths at Kyobashi station it will be rolled out to the rest of Japan’s rail network. West Japan Railway has given assurances that the technology will only be used to identify at-risk intoxicated passengers, and will in no way be used to identify or record people.

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  2. seefizzle

    seefizzle TS Addict Posts: 272   +138

    And this is the difference between America and other countries. If this was in America we would insist on letting the drunk sob fall off the tracks and get run over because he "deserves it".
  3. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,142   +483

    Or what about a guardrail/gate at the track. Kind of like what they do at Walt Disney World's Monorails.
    MilwaukeeMike likes this.
  4. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,729   +1,093

    Oh right... because here in America when a drunk crashes his car, the ambulance doesn't show up. /s

    I'm more surprised that the people are THAT drunk. Being so hammered that you can't avoid a train is pretty impressive. Train's don't exactly swerve at you.
    Hexic likes this.
  5. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,729   +1,093

    lol, duh, right?
    stewi0001 likes this.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 907   +244

    "Its an ingenious solution to a problem that should never have existed in the first place." - James May
    Hexic likes this.
  7. alabama man

    alabama man TS Maniac Posts: 202   +100

    If this system came here it would overload. On weekend evening and nights most of public transport users are drunk (and personal car drivers too).

    And cause it's Japan I thinks most of these deaths were sake assisted suicides. At least here in Finland it's not uncommon for people to kill themselves that way. Not a lot in the news about that cause of the same reason they don't talk about it in Japan, when some suicide hits news many more will follow. Strange people Fins and Japs.
    MilwaukeeMike likes this.
  8. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,729   +1,093

    Good point... that is a common way to kill yourself in Japan. The person doesn't want to leave their family with a funeral bill, but if you're killed by a train, the govt picks up the funeral costs. At least, that's what I was told when I visited. Not sure if it's actually true.
  9. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,618   +494

    "...walk off the edge of the platform into the path of one of Japan’s 366mph bullet trains" You know they don't pull in to the stations doing 366mph right? Even the trains that aren't stopping have to slow down considerably and if the station has 4 track ways it uses the inside lane and not the ones along the platform, but you could jump that no problem.
  10. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,689   +395

    No. Here the city would use it as a revenue source and fine everyone the system picks up for public intoxication. Hell, it could even be tied to a facial recognition system and then send you your ticket in the mail, like the red light cameras.
  11. umbala

    umbala TS Addict Posts: 163   +135

    ^^^^^ This. Exactly. Everything's a corporation, even the governments are really just corporations, and they're all always looking for new sources of revenue. Like the old saying goes; You can help others a little and also help yourself a lot in the process.
    SNGX1275 likes this.

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