SEOUL– Strong winds fanned by Typhoon Nanmadol have toppled trees, caused power outages and turned schools to remote learning in southeastern South Korea, leaving one person injured and hundreds of others evacuated, officials said Monday.
This year’s 14th typhoon had been moving north-northeast from waters 300 kilometers north-northeast of Japan’s Kagoshima at a speed of 20 kilometers per hour as of 10 a.m., according to the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters. The typhoon is expected to move out to waters 310 km west of Japan’s Osaka at 3 p.m.
Nanmadol reached closest to South Korea at 10 a.m., when its center was 200 km away from the southeastern port city of Busan, the Korea Meteorological Administration said.
As the typhoon brushed past southeastern regions, the region saw gushing winds of up to 30 meters per second and rains of about 10 millimeters per hour.
Typhoon warnings were still in place in Busan, Ulsan, and South and North Gyeongsang Province around noon, while the southern island of Jeju, North Gyeongsang Province, and South and North Jeolla Province were under strong-wing advisories.
In Busan, a woman in her 40s sustained minor injuries in her right calf Sunday evening after a flowerpot fell over due to powerful winds.
A street tree was reported fallen over early Monday morning in the eastern coastal city of Ulsan amid strong winds, while an iron structure at a golf course in the south coastal city of Geoje toppled over in the early morning.
More than a hundred other typhoon-related reports have been filed, including destroyed windows or roofs, a flooded sewer and the collapse of a utility pole.
A total of 831 people from 664 households in North Gyeongsang Province, Busan and elsewhere have evacuated for safety concerns.
Power was out for up to three hours for about a thousand households in Ulsan between Sunday night and Monday morning. All the 1,356 households that suffered power outages, including those in Ulsan, had their power supplies restored as of 9 a.m., authorities said.
Amid safety concerns, all elementary, middle, and high schools in Busan and Ulsan turned to remote learning. Including them, more than 1,300 schools turned to e-learning or delayed the start of school nationwide.
Both directions on the Busan-Geoje Fixed Link, an 8.2-kilometer bridge-tunnel, had been closed early in the morning before the blockade was lift at 6 a.m.
Some 101 passenger vessels running on 79 routes along the south coast have been suspended due to high waves.
Prime Minister Han Duck-soo called for the highest vigilance against the potential impact of Typhoon Nanmadol in a typhoon response meeting with officials, vowing to “mobilize all available resources in the event of an emergency recovery situation.”
Through the afternoon, regions around the southeastern Gyeongsang coast are forecast to see winds of up to 35 mps and rains of up to 30 mm per hour, according to the Korea Meteorological Administration.
Source: Yonhap News Agency