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2014年2月15日 (土)

JR北海道捜査 組織蝕む病巣をえぐり出せ

The Yomiuri Shimbun February 14, 2014
Organizational sickness at JR Hokkaido must be revealed, rooted out
JR北海道捜査 組織蝕む病巣をえぐり出せ(2月14日付・読売社説)

The alleged falsification of rail track inspection data by Hokkaido Railway Co. has developed into a criminal case. Organization-wide problems must be thoroughly rooted out through forceful and ongoing investigations.
 保線データの改ざん問題は、刑事事件に発展した。強制捜査により、組織の問題点を徹底的に洗い出してほしい。

Hokkaido police have searched the head office of the railway company—commonly known as JR Hokkaido—and the offices of employees involved in track maintenance on suspicion of violating of the railway business law and the law for the establishment of the Japan Transport Safety Board.
 北海道警が、鉄道事業法と運輸安全委員会設置法違反の容疑で、JR北海道の本社や、改ざんに関与した保線担当部署の一斉捜索に乗り出した。

Police have launched the aggressive investigation after receiving a criminal complaint filed jointly by the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry and the transport safety board against the railway company. JR Hokkaido and its employees are suspected of having falsified reports concerning the company’s rail track inspection data and having blocked regular safety inspections in violation of the two laws.
 国土交通省と運輸安全委員会の刑事告発を受けた強制捜査だ。改ざんは、両法が禁じた虚偽報告や監査妨害の疑いがある。

This is the first complaint of its kind filed against a railway firm in the country. JR Hokkaido received its first supervision order in line with the law on JR companies in January. With the loss of public confidence in the safety of its operations, the company faces the most critical situation ever since its establishment in 1987.
 これらの容疑による告発は前例がない。JR北海道は1月にも、国交省からJR会社法に基づく初の監督命令を受けた。安全運行に対する信頼を失墜し、1987年の会社発足以来、最も危機的な状況にあると言えよう。

The police probe is targeting falsifications of reports on rail track inspections that were allegedly made immediately following a freight train derailment last September.
 道警の捜査は、昨年9月の貨物列車脱線事故の直後に行われた改ざんが対象となる。

The offices in charge of supervising rail track inspections allegedly greatly falsified figures on rail width, which were close to a threshold value, posing a high risk of derailment. Manipulated numerical values were reported to the transport ministry and the transport safety board.
 現場を管轄する部署で、脱線の危険性が高い「限界値」に近づいていたレール幅の計測値が、大幅に改ざんされた。虚偽の数値は、国交省や事故原因を調査する運輸安全委に報告された。

Later data were also allegedly falsified by related employees when the company faced a special safety inspection by the transport ministry.
 その後、国交省の特別保安監査を受ける際にもデータを改ざんした部署がある。

Malicious acts

These acts of falsification are extremely malicious. It was natural that Akihiro Ota, the transport minister, criticized them, saying they “absolutely cannot be tolerated, because they defy the system to ensure transport safety.”
 極めて悪質な行為である。太田国交相が「輸送の安全確保の仕組みを覆すもので、絶対に容認できない」と批判したのは当然だ。

JR Hokkaido has conducted an in-house investigation and confirmed that numerical data were altered by 33 of 44 offices in charge of rail maintenance. Many irregularities came to light even in voluntary in-house inspections that did not involve legally mandated procedures. It is hoped that the primary cause of the sickness affecting the whole of JR Hokkaido will be unraveled through the compulsory investigations.  改ざんを巡っては、JR北海道自身も社内調査を実施し、44の保線担当部署のうち、33部署で数値の書き換えがあったことを確認した。強制的な手続きを伴わない監査や身内同士の調査でさえ、多くの不正が明らかになった。

To further reveal the truth behind these deep-seated falsification issues, testimony from the executives and union members concerned will be indispensable.
 強制捜査により、組織全体を蝕(むしば)む病巣が浮き彫りになることを期待したい。根深い改ざんの実態を解明するには、経営陣や労組関係者の聴取は欠かせまい。

One crucial matter is that JR Hokkaido as a corporate entity faces a criminal complaint. In line with the dual criminal liability provisions of the railway business law and other laws, JR Hokkaido itself will face criminal responsibility as the perpetrator of an illegal act. The firm’s top management must bear an extremely heavy responsibility for bringing about a situation where the company faces criminal investigations.
 重視すべきは、法人としてのJR北海道も告発された点だ。鉄道事業法などの両罰規定により、会社自体が違法行為の当事者として刑事責任の追及を受けることになる。捜査のメスが入る事態を招いた経営陣の責任は極めて重い。

JR Hokkaido has been hit by a string of scandals on top of the alleged data manipulation. For example, an employee was arrested in January on suspicion of destroying an Automatic Train Stop device to cover up an operational error.
 改ざん問題だけでなく、JR北海道では不祥事が相次いでいる。1月には、運転ミスを隠すために自動列車停止装置(ATS)を壊した社員が逮捕された。

President Makoto Nojima and other executives said they would remain in their posts for the time being. But it can hardly be said that they have implemented effective steps to prevent a recurrence of such scandals.
 野島誠社長らは当面の続投を表明している。しかし、不祥事の再発を防ぐ有効な手立てを講じたとは言い難い。

To help reconstruct the organization, JR Hokkaido needs to overhaul its management. It will be important to adopt measures such as importing personnel from outside organizations, including other JR companies.
 組織を立て直すには、JR他社など外部からの人材登用も含め、経営陣の刷新が必要である。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Feb. 14, 2014)
(2014年2月14日01時44分  読売新聞)

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