Death toll from weekend rain rises to 5

By Kim Da-sol

Published : Jul 17, 2017 - 18:54
Updated : Jul 17, 2017 - 22:14

The death toll from torrential rains that devastated the central regions of South Korea over the weekend rose to five, with two still missing, the nation’s disaster control agency said Monday. 

(Yonhap)


The Ministry of Public Safety and Security said the government is considering designating the hardest-hit Cheongju in North Gyeongsang Province as a disaster area to provide it with state funding for recovery works. 

Jeungpyeong, Jincheon and Goesan counties in North Chungcheong Province are also being considered. 

According to the ministry, Cheongju, which has a population of over 830,000 people, can be designated as a disaster area if it suffered at least 9 billion won ($7.98 million) of damage. 

“We will look into the hardest-hit areas and conduct on-site inspections to measure the damage of public facilities, houses and cultural assets,” said a ministry official.

After the state inspections, which take normally up to two weeks, residents in the designated area could receive disaster relief funds, emergency aid, medical treatment and administrative support from the government.

Meanwhile, restoration works were underway in low-lying areas in Gyeongsang and Chungcheong provinces, as downpours subsided. 

North Gyeongsang Province, which received up to 90 millimeters of rain per hour between Friday and Sunday afternoon, was the hardest hit with 22-year record rainfall. Two died in landslides in Cheongju, while two others were found dead after being swept away by floodwaters in Goesan County. 

One road repair worker died after maintenance work in Cheongju, though police suspect he died of a heart attack. 

One person each went missing in Boeun County in North Chungcheong Province and Sangju in North Gyeongsang Province, the ministry said.

At least 517 people across the country were evacuated, with 686 homes, 14 schools and 4,962 hectares of farmland submerged in floodwaters. At least 52 vehicles were reported to have suffered flood damage. 

Over 300 flood victims were from North Chungcheong Province, where recovery works are underway in lower-lying areas at underground parking lots, schools and residential buildings that were submerged. Some 37,000 chickens were found dead at 14 poultry farms in North Chungcheong Province. 

Five schools in the rain-hit regions canceled or cut short classes Monday. 

By Kim Da-sol (ddd@heraldcorp.com)

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