Ban'etsu East Line

The Ban'etsu East Line (磐越東線, Ban'etsu-tō-sen) is a rail line in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan operated by East Japan Railway Company (JR East). It connects Iwaki Station in Iwaki and Kōriyama Station in Kōriyama. The name "Ban'etsu" is taken from the first characters of the names of the ancient provinces of Iwaki () and Echigo (), which the Ban'etsu East and Ban'etsu West lines connect. "Tō" () means "east" in Japanese.

Ban'etsu East Line
A KiHa 110 series DMU near Kanmata Station, September 2018
TypeHeavy rail
LocaleFukushima Prefecture
Opened1915 (1915)
Operator(s)JR East
Line length85.6 km (53.19 mi)
Track gauge1,067 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Operating speed100 km/h (60 mph)
Route map

The line's nickname is the Yūyū Abukuma Line (ゆうゆうあぶくまライン), taken from the Abukuma River that flows nearby.


All trains are operated as local services in 2-, 3-, or 5-car sets mainly between Ononiimachi and Iwaki and between Ogawagō and Kōriyama. Service between Kōriyama and Ononiimachi is provided once every 30 minutes to two hours, but between Ononiimachi and Iwaki there is a period of five hours where no trains operate. One reason for the few continuous services between Iwaki and Kōriyama is the opening of the parallel Ban-etsu Expressway in 1995; as a result, most long distance passengers use highway bus services.

The last express service, Iwaki, stopped running in 1982. During peak holiday periods such as Golden Week, Obon, and New Year, the rapid service Abukuma makes a single round-trip with a 2-car train.

Station list

  • All stations are located in Fukushima Prefecture.
  • Trains can pass one another at stations marked "◇", "∨", or "∧". Trains cannot pass at stations marked "|".
Station Japanese Distance (km) Rapid
Transfers   Location
Iwaki いわき - 0.0 Jōban Line Iwaki
Akai 赤井 4.8 4.8  
Ogawagō 小川郷 5.5 10.3  
Eda 江田 8.0 18.3  
Kawamae 川前 8.0 26.3  
Natsui 夏井 10.4 36.7   Ono, Tamura District
Ononiimachi 小野新町 3.4 40.1  
Kanmata 神俣 6.5 46.6   Tamura
Sugaya 菅谷 3.3 49.9  
Ōgoe 大越 4.4 54.3  
Iwaki-Tokiwa 磐城常葉 4.4 58.7  
Funehiki 船引 3.8 62.5  
Kanameta 要田 7.0 69.5  
Miharu 三春 4.2 73.7   Miharu, Tamura District
Mōgi 舞木 6.1 79.8   Kōriyama
Kōriyama 郡山 5.8 85.6 Tōhoku Shinkansen, Yamagata Shinkansen, Tōhoku Main Line, Ban'etsu West Line, Suigun Line[* 1]
  1. Although the official start of the Suigun Line is Asakanagamori, all trains run through to/from Kōriyama.

Rolling stock

As of February 2009, the following rolling stock is used on the West Ban'etsu Line.


The line was planned by the Railway Construction Act in 1892. The Japanese Government Railways opened the first section as the Heigun West Line (平郡西線) between Koriyama and Miharu in 1914. The Iwaki - Ogawagō opened in 1915 as the Heigun East Line (平郡東線), the same year Miharu - Ononiimachi section opened. When the two sections were connected in 1917, the line became the Ban'etsu East Line.

Freight servies ceased in 1987.


This article incorporates material from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia

    Media related to Ban'etsu East Line at Wikimedia Commons

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