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Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Typhoon Kompasu slams into South Korea

Typhoon Kompasu slammed into South Korea this morning local time as a Category 1 typhoon. The storms forward speed increased significantly resulting in the typhoon making landfall around 6 hours earlier than expected.

The eye of the typhoon is expected to cross over or very near to Seoul bringing heavy rain and flooding to the city.

Typhoon Kompasu batters Seoul and west coastal areas (JoongAng Daily)
Typhoon Kompasu struck central South Korea early Thursday morning, bringing downpours and gusts that paralyzed metro operations in the Seoul metropolitan area, caused massive power outages along the west coast and forced airlines to cancel or divert domestic and international flights.

With almost all above-ground sections of Seoul's subway lines out of service, street trees toppled and winds blowing at a speed of over 20 meters per second, drivers, commuters and students were forced to undergo the worst transportation chaos in decades.

Meteorologists say Kompasu, which means "compass" in Japanese, is the strongest tropical storm to hit the Seoul metropolitan area in 15 years.

One person, an 80-year old, was killed when he was hit by a flying roof tile. No other deaths have been reported so far.

Kompasu weakened from a Category 3 typhoon right after is crossed over Okinawa to a Category 1 on the Safir-Simpson scale over the past two days. The mountainous terrain of Korea will tear up this storm to a tropical storm or depression by the time it re-emerges over water on teh other side of the peninsula.

Typhoon Kompasu Hits Korea(The Chosun Ilbo)
Kompasu weakened from Category 3, with winds between 178 km/h and 209 km/h, to a Category 2 storm with winds between 154 km/h and 177 km/h on Wednesday morning.

Winds weakened further once it made landfall. On Wednesday the KMA predicted rainfall for Thursday ranging from 50 mm to 150 mm and strong winds. More than 300 mm of heavy rain were expected in northern Gyeonggi Province, northern Gangwon Province, Jeju Island and the southern coast of Korea as well as Mt. Jiri.

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