East Japan Railway Co.’s (JR-EAST Train) train service on the Joban Line completely resumed on March 14 nine years after the March 2011 triple disaster. The 344-kilometer Joban line that connects Tokyo and Miyagi Prefecture was the last remaining line to resume operations this year 2020. According to JR East, repair work on Joban Lines’ broken stretch was delayed due to high levels of radiation on the aforementioned areas. Before the reopening, JR East had provided bus services for the closed part of the Joban Line. Limited express trains connecting Tokyo to Sendai, the capital of Miyagi, will make three round-trips per day.

JR-EAST Train service on a 20.8-kilometer distance between Tomioka and Namie near the disaster-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the last part of the line, had been suspended since the catastrophe. Although some people expect that the development of public transport in affected areas will increase the number of visitors and boost regional revitalization, others believe that the effects will be limited as most locals still prefer cars as the main mode of transport. On March 11, 2011, northeastern Japan was struck by a magnitude-9.0 earthquake that caused enormous damage in the region. This disaster is also called The Great Sendai Earthquake or The Great Tōhoku Earthquake.