Blanket of Snow on Mount Haku, Visible From Fukui City

Blanket of Snow on Mount Haku, Visible From Fukui City

Mountain’s First Snowfall, 11 Days Sooner Than Previous Year

On October 17th, Mount Haku (with an elevation of 2702 metres), which spans across Fukui and Ishikawa prefectures, saw its first blanket of snow leading towards the upcoming winter season. The snowy peaks would be seen from within Fukui City. According to the Kanazawa Local Meteorological Office, snow has settled on the mountain 11 days sooner than the previous year, although in line with the average year.

On this day, Fukui Prefecture saw clouds and rain due to the low-pressure system and humid atmosphere. According to the Fukui Local Meteorological Office, with an atmosphere of low resistance towards the incoming cold air, the highest temperatures seen across all 10 observation sites were 3.5⁰C to 7.5⁰C lower than the average year, comparable to November temperatures.

On October 18th, a high-pressure system will cover the areas within Fukui Prefecture. Due to radiative cooling during the early morning, temperatures are predicted to fall below 10⁰C, making for extreme temperature differences throughout the day.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/gallery/1187152?ph=1

Hokuriku Shinkansen, Lowest Ridership Since Opening of Kanazawa Extention

Hokuriku Shinkansen, Lowest Ridership Since Opening of Kanazawa Extention

JR West Kanazawa Branch, Limited Express and Shinkansen Ridership During 2020 Obon Holidays

On August 18th, Japan Rail (JR) West Kanazawa Branch Office released the ridership records for the Limited Express and Shinkansen trains during this year’s Obon holiday period (August 7th – 17th). Throughout the whole period, there were approximately 164 thousand passengers, 23% of last year’s figures during the same holiday period, the lowest numbers seen since the opening of the Kanazawa extension of the Hokuriku Shinkansen line.

The number of passengers on the Limited Express trains were approximately 86 thousand, 24% of last year’s figures, and the numbers on the Shinkansen trains were approximately 78 thousand, 23% of last year’s numbers. The train with the highest passenger rate was the Thunderbird 92, on August 16th, at 63% capacity. The JR West Kanazawa Branch Office explained, “The continuous spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection was a huge influence. We will consider the operation schedule going forward, based on the ridership conditions from hereon.”

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1146815

Obon During COVID-19, 42% Drop in Traffic Along Hokuriku Expressway

Obon During COVID-19, 42% Drop in Traffic Along Hokuriku Expressway

2020 Traffic Volume Summary, Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway Also Experience Decrease

On August 17th, the Kanazawa Regional Head Office of the Central Nippon Expressway Company Limited (NEXCO Central) gave a report on the traffic volume during this year’s Obon period (August 7th – 16th). Along both directions of the Hokuriku Expressway, between the Fukui Interchange (IC) and the Sabae IC, the average traffic volume in a day was approximately 28.6 thousand vehicles. Along the Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway, between the Wakasa-Mikata IC and the Wakasa-Mihama IC, there were approximately 8.3 thousand vehicles in a day. Compared to the figures in 2019’s Obon period (August 9th – 18th, 2019), the traffic volume had dropped by 42%. The large drop was influenced through the practice of self-restraint, by refraining from travelling or people returning to their hometowns, as a consequence of the continuous spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

During this year’s Obon period, the traffic volume between the Fukui IC and Sabae IC saw its peak day on August 7th, with approximately 31.3 thousand vehicles (along both directions), and between the Wakasa-Mikata IC and Wakasa-Mihama IC, the peak day was the 15th, with approximately 9.5 thousand vehicles (along both directions). Within the jurisdiction of the Kanazawa Regional Head Office of NEXCO Central, during 2019’s Obon period, there were five instances of traffic jams that stretched over 5 kilometres; during 2020’s Obon period, there were none.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1146674

JR Hokuriku Line Trains Undergoing Antivirus Treatment

JR Hokuriku Line Trains Undergoing Antivirus Treatment

JR-West Kanazawa Branch, COVID-19 Countermeasure

On June 17th, the Kanazawa branch of the West Japan Railway Company (JR-West) addressed to news media that trains operating within the Hokuriku area (excluding Shinkansen trains) are undergoing antiviral and antibacterial treatment at the Kanazawa Consolidated Railyard (in Hakusan City, Ishikawa Prefecture), as part of the infection countermeasures against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infection and the like.

Of the 431 trains under the branch’s jurisdiction, 222 limited-express trains are expected to complete the treatment process by the end of July; up to now, approximately 25% of the trains have completed the process. After the limited-express trains, the regular trains will undergo the same treatment.

On this day, JR-West employees were performing antiviral and antibacterial operations, including spraying disinfectant on handles, tables, and seats. Parts that are more frequently touched and handled by passengers are sprayed over twice. The antiviral and antibacterial effects will last for 3 to 5 years, and also has deodorizing and mould-preventing properties.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1106728

Steady Construction Work Towards Opening in Three Years

Steady Construction Work Towards Opening in Three Years

Hokuriku Shinkansen Track Construction Has Begun

With the opening of the Kanazawa-Tsuruga extension of the Hokuriku Shinkansen line approaching in three years, the construction site within Fukui City has begun a full-scale operation on installing the Shinkansen rail lines.

Up until recently, along the elevated bridge within Fukui City’s Takayanagi district, approximately one kilometre of rail has been temporarily put in place using cranes and manpower; but from April 7th, a specialized machine will be used to set the rails. The machine, specially built by Nippon Steel’s Kyushu Steel Works (located in Fukuoka Prefecture), can extend a rail of 200 metres.

On April 7th, approximately 30 metres of track was set. According to the Japan Railway Construction, Transport and Technology Agency, which is responsible for the construction of the Shinkansen railway, a full-scale operation on rail installation between Kanazawa and Tsuruga will begin from April, with the railway being extended by 600 metres each day.

Within Fukui Prefecture, the Hokuriku Shinkansen line between Awara City and Tsuruga City is approximately 75 kilometres, with track installation scheduled to finish by spring 2022.

Source: https://www.fukui-tv.co.jp/?post_type=fukui_news&p=127842&page=1