Disasters & Accidents

Cyclone Khanun causes disruptions, closures as it makes landfall in South Korea

Seoul, Aug 10 (EFE).- Tropical cyclone Khanun made landfall on Thursday on the southeastern coast of South Korea, bringing heavy rains and winds that have led to the cancellation of flights and trains and the closure of roads, maritime routes and schools in the country.

Khanun, the sixth typhoon of the season in the Pacific, which was downgraded to a severe tropical storm during its passage in the last few days through southwestern Japan, where it left two people dead and caused major transport disruptions, made landfall near the city of Geoje at around 9:20 am on Thursday.

The storm is moving north at about 20 kph (12 mph) and is expected to continue making its way vertically through the Korean peninsula until it reaches about 50 kilometers (31 miles) southwest of Daegu around noon and approaching Cheongju and Seoul overnight, according to the forecasts of the meteorological authorities.

Khanun carries gusts of wind of up to 126 kph and has led to the declaration of an alert due to forecasts of heavy rains across the country.

Rainfall of up to 500 millimeters has been forecast in areas along the northeastern coast and between 100 and 200 mm in the capital until early Friday morning.

If the cyclone continues along its expected course, it is estimated to vertically traverse South Korea in about 15 hours, causing more rainfall and damage.

There were widespread reports of material damage, local Yonhap news agency reported, without providing further details.

Some 450 flights had been suspended in the country due to the storm on Friday morning, a figure that is expected to increase as Khanun advances through the territory, and classes in schools in the affected areas were suspended as a precautionary measure.

It is the first time since comparable data has been available since 1951 that typhoon will cross the Korean peninsula longitudinally.

Based on its current course, the tropical storm will cross the border into North Korea after midnight.

Khanun made landfall in South Korea after wreaking havoc in southwestern Japan for a week, due to its extremely slow speed and after making a U-turn back into the region while moving towards China and Taiwan.

Its influence was still felt early Thursday in the Japanese archipelago, where dozens of trains were still suspended and flights affected. EFE


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