Korean Peninsula awaits typhoon; dozens of flights canceled
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Dozens of flights were canceled and parks were closed in South Korea on Friday as powerful Typhoon Lingling gained momentum on its path toward the Korean Peninsula.
The Korea Meteorological Association said the typhoon is expected to pass off the west coast of South Korea on Saturday afternoon before making landfall in North Korea on Saturday evening. The agency warned of possible flooding, landslides and structure damage caused by strong rains combined with very strong winds expected nationwide until early Sunday.
North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency said "all the fields and units of the country are taking strict measures for preventing damage from flood and rainy winds."
The storm was 300 kilometers (185 miles) southwest of the southern resort island of Jeju as of Friday evening, moving north at 33 kilometers (20 miles) per hour with winds of up to 155 kilometers (96 miles) per hour, the South Korean weather agency said.
South Korea's transport ministry said 80 flights were canceled at Jeju International Airport as of Friday evening and that more flights are expected to be canceled nationwide as the typhoon approaches. The education ministry said about 300 schools in Jeju sent children home early on Friday to help their families prepare for the typhoon.
Seoul closed public parks and zoos starting Friday evening and a city official said they will remain closed through Sunday.