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Drenched nation braces for more rain

The nation is expected to see more rainfall, adding salt to the wound for many still facing restoration work after severe flooding and landslides last week, according to the state’s weather agency Monday.

Amid record rainfall, the southwestern provinces of North and South Jeolla, the southern island of Jeju and other parts of the south coast of Korea will be hit with strong gusts, thunderstorms and some 50 millimeters of rain an hour until Tuesday.

According to the Korea Meteorological Administration, a low pressure trough will move over the southern half of the peninsula bringing occasional rain, while the North Pacific high pressure system will bring scattered showers in central regions.

Starting Saturday, typhoon Muifa could possibly add to Korea’s already wet woes as the ninth typhoon this year comes barreling down toward the region.

“Because the typhoons line is still unpredictable, it is too early to make conclusions,” said one KMA official.

As of Monday morning, the KMA predicts that the 530 kilometer radius typhoon will enter China through Shanghai.

“After foundations have become full or weakened with regionally focused torrential rains following the rainy season, a typhoon to top it all off could be a worst case scenario that we cannot eliminate,” said a KMA official.

Typhoon Muifa is currently blowing winds at 173 kilometers per hour, and weather experts predict the storm to be very strong.

According to officials, the course of the typhoon largely depends on the North Pacific high pressure system, which could either push the typhoon to China or pull it toward the peninsula.

However, even if the typhoon is pushed towards China, the peninsula will not be able to escape the rains, causing further damage as many are still nursing the wounds that rainfall caused last week.

Seoul alone registered 587 millimeters of rain in just three days last week, breaking records and causing deadly landslides and floods, crippling the city.

Dongducheon, north of Seoul, and other northern parts of Gyeonggi Province surrounding the capital city saw more than 700 millimeters of rain since the beginning of last week.

By Robert Lee (robert@heraldcorp.com)
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