• News Update 9/17/2021


▶ JEJU SUFFERS FLOODING FROM TYPHOON CHANTHU


Typhoon Chanthu lashed South Korea's southern resort island of Jeju overnight with heavy rain and high winds, flooding roads and farmland.

While the storm did not make landfall, it got very close around 7 a.m. this morning, passing 60 kilometers south-southeast of the city of Seogwipo.

The Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters said there were reports of structural damage, downed trees and a streetlight as well as submerged streets, but no injuries.

Around two dozen morning flights to and from Jeju were canceled along with ferries.

Typhoon warnings remained in effect for Jeju and parts of South Jeolla Province, with advisories issued for Busan, and areas in the South Jeolla Province.

The national weather agency said southern regions could get up to 80 more millimeters of rain throughout the day.

The 14th typhoon of the season has moved eastward along the Korea Strait and is expected to hit southwestern Japan over the weekend.

▶ AUTHORITIES BRACE FOR POST-CHUSEOK COVID SURGE

Authorities and health officials are bracing for a potential spike in new coronavirus cases as tens of millions of people are expected to travel across the country to celebrate Chuseok.

Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum expressed his concern today over a potential post-holiday surge in new cases, spreading from the capital region to non-metro areas.

During an interagency meeting, he noted that nearly 80 percent of all infections over the last few days have come from the greater Seoul area that includes Incheon and Gyeonggi Province.

He stressed people should not forget even for a moment that the fight against the pandemic continues.

The prime minister urged people to get tested if they feel symptoms during the five-day holiday, saying health centers and screening sites will remain open.

▶ KDCA REPORTS OVER 2,000 NEW INFECTIONS

Local health authorities have added 2,008 new cases of COVID-19 and three more virus-related fatalities to the growing caseload amid the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said Friday it confirmed 1,973 local infections and 35 imported cases in the last 24 hours.

Since the start of the pandemic, the KDCA has recorded 281,938 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 2,389 deaths -- a 0.85 percent case-fatality rate.

Authorities have urged people to stay at home and get vaccinated to curb the spread of the disease.

The government said it expects to hit its initial goal of a first-shot vaccination rate of 70 percent this week.

So far, 69 percent of the country's population of over 51 million, have had their first shot of a COVID-19 vaccine, and nearly 42 percent have been fully vaccinated.

▶ UN CHIEF URGES WORLD TO ACT NOW ON CLIMATE CHANGE

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says November's climate summit in Glasgow must be the turning point in humanity's fight to limit global warming.

He said he was alarmed by how far off course the world currently was and stressed that if temperature rises were to be limited to just 1.5 percent, there had to be immediate cuts in emissions on a huge scale.

[Clip: Guterres]
"We really are out of time. We must act now to prevent further irreversible damage. COP 26 this November must mark the turning point. By then we need all countries to commit to achieve net zero emissions by the middle of the century and to present clear, credible, long-term strategies to get there."



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