Snowfall leads to two fatal accidents

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Snowfall leads to two fatal accidents

Due to heavy snowfall, the roof of an automobile repair center collapsed yesterday, leaving one man dead and two injured, police said.

According to authorities, the roof of the building, located in Buk District, Ulsan, which caved in around 12:40 a.m., was unable to support the weight of the snow, which has been pelting the Gangwon and Gyeongsang regions since the weekend.

The man killed was a 37-year-old worker, whom police only identified as Lee. The injuries sustained by the two other men were not life-threatening, they added.

The incident yesterday in Ulsan follows a similar weather-related accident in which a man, whom police would not identify, was killed Monday after the roof of an auto parts factory in Buk District collapsed at about 10:40 p.m.

The industrial city has been hit with an accumulated 16 centimeters (6.2 inches) of snow over a three-day period, from Sunday to 11 a.m. yesterday, prompting authorities to issue a heavy snowfall advisory warning in the region. The Korea Meteorological Administration said the snowfall in the city is the fifth-highest recorded since Ulsan’s weather forecast center opened in 1932.

Yesterday’s weather led to the temporary closure of all elementary and middle schools in the city, with some high schools implementing one- and two-hour delays. Heavy traffic jams during rush hour also compounded problems in the area.

To prevent the snow from freezing on the streets - it was forecast that temperatures would drop below zero Celsius early yesterday morning - the Ulsan city government dispatched nearly 90 snow-removal vehicles to clear the roads.

The weather center, however, does not anticipate more snow in Ulsan for the remainder of the week and through the weekend.

“Ulsan and Busan will be spared snow until next week, while coastal cities in Gangwon, including Gangneung and Sokcho, are forecast to have more snowfall [tomorrow], Friday and next Tuesday,” the weather agency said.

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