KiHa 100 DMU at Kesennuma Station, October 2006
|Line length||105.7 km (65.7 mi)|
|Track gauge||1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)|
The Ōfunato Line (大船渡線? Ōfunato-sen) is a local rail line in Iwate Prefecture, Japan, operated by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East). It originally connected Ichinoseki Station in Ichinoseki to Sakari Station in Ōfunato, on the Tohoku coast.
The eastern section of the line was significantly damaged by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011. In January 2012, services resumed on the western 62.0 km portion of the route between Ichinoseki and Kesennuma. The eastern section between Kesennuma and Sakari remains closed, and in February 2012, JR East officially proposed that this section of the line be scrapped and the right-of-way used as a bus rapid transit (BRT) route.
The Ichinoseki - Kesennuma section opened in stages between 1925 and 1929, with the Kesennuma - Sakari section opening between 1932 and 1935.
Freight services ceased in 1983/4.
Following the 2011 disaster, services resumed on the Ichinoseki - Kesennuma section on 1 April, but were suspended again between 7–18 April due to aftershocks.
The first section of the busway replacing the Kesennuma - Sakari section opened in March 2013.
In April 2005, there were 27 services daily using this line (14 eastbound, 13 westbound).
Following the 2011 disaster, operations were reduced to ten eastbound local trains and one Super Dragon rapid service, with westbound services consisting of nine local trains and one rapid. In March 2013 the rapid services were withdrawn.
On 22 December 2012, a special Pokémon With You train began running on the line. It now operates one round-trip on weekends, departing at 11:01am eastbound from Ichinoseki and returning at 15:08 westbound. During Japanese school holidays it runs daily.
Stations in greyed out cells have been closed since the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.
|Station name||Japanese||Distance (km) from||Super Dragon
|Ichinoseki||一ノ関||-||0.0||●||Tōhoku Main Line,
|Kesennuma||気仙沼||6.7||62.0||●||Kesennuma Line||Kesennuma, Miyagi|
Iwate Development Railway
This article incorporates material from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia
- 被災２路線、廃止しバス専用道提案へ ＪＲ東、岩手県に [JR East proposes to scrap two lines and convert to bus routes]. The Asahi Shimbun Digital (in Japanese). Japan: The Asahi Shimbun Company. 8 February 2012. Retrieved 11 March 2012.
- JR East. "JR East Special Train timetable Winter 2016-17" (PDF) (in Japanese). p. 6. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
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