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Central safety headquarters on standby emergency duty amid heavy rain forecast

All News 19:45 July 27, 2020

SEOUL, July 27 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's disaster control headquarters was placed on initial emergency standby Monday amid forecasts of heavy rain overnight, with front-line workers ordered to prepare for unexpected situations.

All civil defense sector officials have gone into the first stage of emergency duty as of 4:30 p.m., with the weather service predicting downpours throughout the night, particularly along the country's southern coast, the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters said.

It said related agencies and regional governments have been advised to check their drainage pumps and to forward deploy emergency relief equipment so they can be used quickly. Monitoring of low lying areas susceptible to flooding and hilly regions vulnerable to landslides is to be increased, with officials told to check on evacuation procedures to help get people to safety if the need arises.

The safety headquarters said strict attention needs to be paid to underpasses and underground parking lots, with access being controlled before any heavy precipitation.

The Ministry of the Interior and Safety, which is overall in charge of all civil emergency actions, urged people to avoid coastlines, valleys and river banks when heavy rains are forecast. It said those living in exposed places must quickly follow orders in emergency situations.

Minister of the Interior and Safety Chin Young (R) holds a meeting with civil defense officials in Seoul on July 26, 2020, to check the government's response to heavy rains, in this file photo provided by the ministry. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

Related to the latest weather developments, the port of Busan, 453 kilometers southeast of Seoul, said all of its officials and police force are on standby. It said some underpasses and low lying roads near bridges have been closed to traffic.

The port city is expected to get 50-200 millimeters of rain till midnight, which could lead to flooding. On Thursday, the city received 200 mm of rain, which resulted in three deaths and injured four people.

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