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Japan Bullet Train Fire: Two Dead After Man Sets Himself Ablaze

by Sarah Burke and Arata Yamamoto /  / Updated 

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Two people died and more than a dozen were injured when a man set himself on fire aboard one of Japan's high-speed bullet trains on Tuesday, officials said.

Kanagawa Prefecture Police confirmed to NBC News that in addition to the self-immolation, a female passenger died after suffering cardiac arrest on the train headed to Osaka from Tokyo. Around 20 people were injured, police added.

According to national public broadcaster NHK, the man doused himself with a gasoline-like substance in the first car of the train, while the female passenger suffered cardiac arrest between the first and second cars.

Image: Japan train fire incident
This still image taken from video shows the smoky interior of a bullet train on Tuesday.TBS / AFP via Getty Images

One eyewitnesses told Japanese broadcaster JNN that "at the front of the first carriage, there was someone holding a plastic container, a one-liter container" who then "poured the entire thing around… poured it over himself, and then set it on fire."

Central Japan Railway — operator of the train — said there were as many as 1,000 people aboard when the incident occurred. It said that passengers in the first three carriages were evacuated and held on the train for several hours as police and firefighters inspected the scene.

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