Create a new manual for flooding

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Create a new manual for flooding

The ruins of Typhoon Hinnamnor after it skinned the Korean Peninsula on Monday have not been small although casualties have been fewer than from other monstrous typhoons in the past. Seven people drowned in an underground parking lot of an apartment building in Pohang, North Gyeongsang from sudden flooding in the early morning.

The flooding in an underground parking lot at the apartment in Nam District, Pohang, urgently calls for a reexamination of underground facilities. The country must be more readied against extreme weather disasters like gigantic rainfalls from climate changes. Cities along the eastern coastal line are particularly vulnerable to typhoons as most of them pass through the region. Because of low ground and many streams flowing through the southeastern region, they are very vulnerable to flooding.

The typhoon that hit Pohang early Monday accompanied unprecedented rainfall of more than 100 millimeters per hour. The sudden inundation of streams overflowed river banks and flooded nearby homes and apartments on lower ground, in particular.

The apartments in Indeok-dong in the city alerted residents to take their cars out of the underground parking lot due to rapidly flooding water. Residents went down to the basement in a blackout. But nine were swept up by the cascading rain and only two survived.

The maintenance office of the apartment claimed that it acted by the manual on alerting residents against the possibility of flooding. Residents also could not have imagined that they could be swept up by floods as they had not experienced such a strong rainfall. Since heavy storms could become more rampant down the road, new manuals and action plans must be set.

In Korea, apartments take up 60 percent of housing and most of them have parking spaces underground. Measures must be taken swiftly so that home s do not turn into a place for unwanted deaths. The central government must establish a new disaster manual together with local governments across the country. At the same time, the Ministry of Health and Welfare and local governments must carry out aid programs, including consultations for trauma to help lessen anxieties and pain of flood victims.
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