A passenger on one of Japan's high-speed bullet trains set himself on fire Tuesday, filling a carriage with smoke, Japanese officials said. National broadcaster NHK said the man and a female passenger were dead.
Japan's transport ministry and a fire official said the victims were in a state of “cardiopulmonary arrest,” the term used before official confirmation.
The passenger apparently poured oil over his head before setting himself on fire, said a transport ministry official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, citing department policy. Kyodo news service reported that he set himself on fire with a lighter.
The train stopped when a passenger pressed an emergency button after finding one of the two victims collapsed on the floor near a restroom in the first car, he said. The other victim was found collapsed in an area between the first and second cars.
The train, which was travelling from Tokyo to Osaka, remained stopped on the tracks outside of Odawara city for about three hours. Bullet train service between Tokyo and Osaka was suspended.
At least nine others were injured, one seriously, mostly from smoke inhalation, Odawara Fire Department official Ikutaro Torii said.