Manners on board are important in Japan, but we never expected to see this.

Japanese trains rank amongst the busiest in the world, yet they’re surprisingly quiet and peaceful when you consider the huge numbers of people who ride them every day. This is largely due to everybody minding their manners, an aspect of rail travel deemed so important it warrants not just frequent onboard announcements, but large promotional campaigns involving eye-catching posters and commercials as well.

These notices remind passengers to refrain from acts that disturb the comfort of other passengers, including talking on the phone, speaking loudly on the train, wearing large backpacks on board, and even applying makeup. One other request that’s often mentioned in rail announcements is for passengers to avoid crossing their legs, as it can encroach on the space where passengers stand in front of the seating areas.

It’s this particular act that got one passenger riled up in Japan recently, but it wasn’t because he was standing in front of someone crossing their legs. He was sitting beside them, and it infuriated him so much he decided to reprimand them by hitting them repeatedly with his newspaper.

Take a look at the video below:

The clip above begins with the man already in a heated argument with the younger woman. She laughs him off and crosses her legs, at which point the man whacks her twice with his newspaper. The man on the other side of the woman holds up his hand asks the older man to stop, at which point railway staff arrive to diffuse the situation.

The first staff member is careful in his approach, with his primary concern being to stop the man from hitting the female passenger again. Then a second staff member arrives for backup, before two more rail staff arrive to take over, attempting to get the man to alight from the carriage, which appears to have stopped at Nagata Station in Osaka.

While the person who uploaded the video didn’t mention how the situation was eventually resolved, their tweet quickly went viral, receiving over 80,000 likes, 4.5 million views, and comments like:

“Why didn’t she just get up and move? She was in a potentially dangerous situation.”
“He looks like he’s been drinking all day.”
“She was probably crossing her legs to make a point against his manspreading.”
“This is assault and should be reported to police.”
“This is exactly why we need security cameras on trains.”

Onboard security cameras are gradually being introduced on Japanese trains, with all East Japan Railway trains in and around the Tokyo already equipped with the devices last summer.

Hopefully these new safety measures will help to stop incidents of groping, and cases of assault like the one seen in the video, and encourage more people to step in when necessary to help others in a society that’s often reluctant to get involved with other people’s dilemmas.

Source: Jin
Images: Twitter/@kami_heiwa
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