Asia Briefs:Japan rail firm sorry that train left 20sec early

Ann Santiago
November 17, 2017

So much so, that a Japanese rail company has apologised for a train leaving 20 seconds early.

The train had arrived at the station on time, at 40 seconds past 9:43 a.m.

The Minami Nagareyama station is halfway on the line connecting Tsukuba, a city located in the northern Kantō region of Japan, to Akihabara station in Tokyo in less than an hour.

A train company in Japan issued an apology to its customers after one of its trains departed 20 seconds early.

Trains in Japan are well known for their punctuality.


The statement said the company's management wanted to "deeply apologise for the severe inconvenience" to any customers affected by the error, even though it did not receive any complaints.

Because it's for a train that left 20 seconds early.

However, due to a failure by the crew to properly consult the schedule, the train wound up heading off on its way prematurely, after all the passengers had been loaded aboard-causing it to depart at 9:44:20, instead. Even if that's not the sort of mistake that absolutely demands an apology, there's nothing wrong, and definitely something admirable, about taking a moment to say sorry for any problems that the early departure may have caused.

"The fact that Japanese companies care so much about customer satisfaction, consistently try to look at things from the end-user's point of view, and are willing to offer a honest apology even for understandable inconveniences is, really, one of the most attractive parts of Japanese society, and one of my favourite things about living here".

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