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Japanese Airlines Cancel Some Tokyo Flights as Snow Jams Traffic

Japanese Airlines Cancel Some Tokyo Flights as Snow Jams Traffic
Passengers are seen lying on the floor at Narita Airport near Tokyo in the morning of Jan. 15, 2013, after spending the night due to flight schedule disruptions stemming from heavy snow. Source: Kyodo via AP Images

Japanese airlines canceled some domestic flights for a second day after Tokyo’s first snowfall of the season caused some highways and train services to close.

All Nippon Airways Co., Japan’s largest listed carrier, halted 21 flights today, affecting about 4,000 passengers, Mitsuyo Ide, a company spokeswoman, said by phone. Japan Airlines Co. suspended 12 domestic flights, with about 950 passengers affected as of 9:30 a.m., said Sayaka Sakamoto, a spokeswoman for the carrier. No international flights had been canceled as of 9 a.m., they said.

Some highways, including one running through Tokyo’s Shinjuku district, were closed as of 8 a.m. today, according to operator Metropolitan Expressway Co.’s website.

Snow disrupted flights, train services and road traffic yesterday after the Japan Meteorological Agency issued a gale and snow advisory for central Tokyo, where seven centimeters (2.8 inches) of snow fell. Clear-to-cloudy weather is forecast for Tokyo today with no snowfall, according to the agency’s update on its website as of 5 a.m. Japan time.

East Japan Railway Co. and Central Japan Railway Co. have resumed normal bullet train services across the nation, after some delays and cancellations yesterday, the operators said on their respective websites. Services may be delayed as operators investigate safety conditions, they said.

The Nippori-Toneri Liner, run by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s Bureau of Transportation, halted services as snow froze onto tracks as of 9 a.m., according to its website. Operations were expected to resume about 10 a.m., it said.

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