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Tokyo - TRTA & TBTMG

Crime prevention measures
The extremely low crime rates within the Tokyo metro system are, first of all, the result of the low incidence of crime in the Japanese society. In other words, the criminal pressure upon the metro system is low. Beside this, there are some internal factors that contribute to this low-crime situation. The level of informal and semi-formal control within the Tokyo metro is high and ever-present. At every hour of the day, travellers and staff are present in every part of the metro system. Both the passengers and metro staff are motivated both in the performance of control as in exercising corrective behaviour in cases of criminal occurrence. This high level of responsibility is stimulated by a metro design and management that keeps the people involved. Every station has a station manager who is responsible for the atmosphere and efficiency of "his" station. The stations and trains are kept clean, neat, and well-maintained. A clear norm is set and maintained both by station design, organisational measures, and the cooperation of the travellers. Smoking and littering are forbidden and fare evasion is prevented by the system-wide installation of automated ticket vending and collecting machines, formal gate control, and machines for the payment of access fares.

The fact that the crime prevention construction and management of low-crime metro systems must be up-to-date and well-prepared to expect the unexpected was clearly demonstrated in 1995 when a member of a religious sect cowardly attacked the Tokyo metro with several packages of Sarin gas. This single event instantly transformed one of the safest metro systems in the world into the scene of the most serious criminal case in metro history.

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Source: López, M.J.J., Crime Prevention Guidelines for the Construction & Management of Metro Systems, Den Haag: RCM-advies 1996, pg. 23-25.

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