Leap year glitch disrupts Japan's driving licence issuance

TOKYO: Several local police departments across Japan encountered problems in issuing driving licences on Thursday due to a system malfunction related to the leap year, according to reports from local media.

Police departments in the prefectures of Niigata, Kanagawa, Okayama and Ehime reported issues starting Thursday morning, with some unable to transmit personal data from the driver management system to the licence issuance machines.

The extra day at the end of February appears to have triggered a system error related to time and date functions, reported national news agency Kyodo, adding that the system was almost restored by noon.

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Prefectural police departments are transitioning to the centralised system provided by the National Police Agency (NPA) from managing driving licence issuance independently, said the report, citing the NPA.

The four prefectural departments in question have already completed this transition and utilise machines from the same manufacturer. All police departments nationwide are expected to finalise the transition by the end of March 2025.

In a separate incident, Japanese drugstore operator Sugi Holdings Co also encountered a technical issue in the morning, affecting its prescription management system's ability to automatically calculate drug prices at its stores nationwide. - Bernama-Xinhua
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