On August 22, 2012, the JR East confirmed that one of its drivers suffered from a heat stroke after the bullet train air conditioning unit failed. The company released a statement, in which it mentioned the reason why one of its drivers was substituted for another driver.

A substitute driver was brought in on the Tokyo bound bullet train service after 1 pm at Akita Station on August 19, 2012. A spokesperson from JR said that the man was taken ill while on duty and was removed from the train at the Akita station.

The ill driver was then taken to the hospital to be treated for heat stroke. After an investigation in to the incident, it was found that the air conditioning was not working in the driver’s compartment and a portable alternative was provided.

But still the portable cooler was not effective and caused the man to suffer from heat stroke. JR also reported that the train was delayed for about an hour while the emergency relief driver changeover took place. The spokesperson also revealed that the Tokyo bound services were delayed due to the incident. The heat in Japan is taking a toll on the people as more and more are suffering from heat stroke.