Commuters suffered repeated disruptions from a sudden spate of snake induced power outages to trains in several areas; a station in Ibaraki suffered two cases over two days where snakes found their way onto the overhead power lines, causing shorts which lasted hours and inconvenienced thousands of passengers. Another station in Niigata suffered a very similar outage with a snake being found on the power lines. The snakes involved in the attacks were all medium size non-venomous types, it is said.
The stations concerned are investigating countermeasures, though apparently in Niigata the poles in question already had snakeproof sheets to prevent errant serpents from mounting them; the snake simply forced its way through the barrier. Via Asahi.
Unfortunately, none of the snakes involved in these tragic incidents survived their ill considered ventures.