Heavy rains from tropical storm Lupit flood homes, roads on east coast

SEOUL-- Heavy rains brought by tropical storm Lupit led to flooding in parts of Gangwon Province along the east coast and in the southeastern port city of Busan, authorities said Monday.

The eastern coastal city of Sokcho, 213 kilometers northeast of Seoul, received 67.5 millimeters of rain per hour on Sunday afternoon, according to the Gangwon provincial government.

Flooding was reported at 26 houses, seven shops and one road, with the city government planning to carry out on-site inspections Monday to determine the extent of the damage.

In Goseong, north of Sokcho, firefighters pulled five passengers from a car that was trapped in an underpass flooded by heavy rain.

Goseong received 131 millimeters of rain, whereas Sokcho received 107.8 millimeters and Gangneung, south of Sokcho, received 171.6 millimeters between Sunday and 10 a.m. Monday.

Heavy rain warnings were issued in all three areas but lifted Monday morning. The central government also lifted its Level 1 emergency response.

The Gangwon government earlier banned access to 52 trails in three national parks, including on Mount Seorak, and alerted visitors to mountain valleys and beaches in eight cities and counties.

The Sokcho coast guard on Monday issued an advisory to prevent safety-related accidents on the coast. The advisory, which will be in place until Wednesday, is the second-highest level of a three-tier system and restricts people's access to seawalls while increasing patrols of high-risk areas.

The coast guard in Pohang, 374 kilometers southeast of Seoul, also issued the same advisory for three days until Wednesday.

The Korea Meteorological Administration forecast up to 80 millimeters more rain on the east coast until Monday afternoon and urged caution.

In Busan, two people who went fishing on the rocks on the seashore called for help Sunday night as the water around them began to swell. The coast guard sent vessels and brought them to safety. At least one road in the city flooded after heavy rain.

The southern island of Jeju forecast up to 40 millimeters of rain Monday and cautioned against large waves on beaches and low-lying areas.

A high seas warning has been issued in waters off Jeju's south coast, where weather authorities forecast strong winds of 9 to 16 meters per second and waves between 1.5 to 4 meters tall.

Lupit has followed a northeastward path through Japan without directly traveling over the Korean Peninsula.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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