The Awesome Power of Nature

In case you were wondering why this site was down for about 5 hours today, last night we had one of the most severe thunderstorms of this monsoon season here. The lightning and thunder was some of the most intense I’ve experienced in recent memory. It was striking several times per minute all over my neighborhood – it felt similar to the controlled demolitions of buildings I’ve witnessed from a few blocks away, it wasn’t a crack it was a hard hitting thud that rattled your chest and bones.

I generally enjoy thunderstorms but this one was more than inconvenient. I was in the process of working on updating the template for this site when the power went out, and stayed out for over 5 hours. Additionally more than 18 people are dead, the power is still out to many homes, and fortunately I don’t have to commute to work because the transportation system is in chaos.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words so here are a couple pictures from down the street to illustrate:

From the Korea Herald:

The precipitation in Seoul between Tuesday and early Wednesday morning exceeded 400mm, the national weather agency said, adding heavy rain is expected through early Thursday morning.

The Korea Meteorological Administration said downpours tallying a record 60mm per hour were recorded in the country’s central and southern parts.

Southern Seoul was the hardest hit part of the capital.

The building of the educational TV station, EBS, was flooded and SK Telecom’s mobile networks. Flooding was reported in streets, subway stations, underground walkways and residential districts throughout the city.

A number of flooded main roads in downtown and southern Seoul were closed to traffic, while a motorway linking Seoul to southern Gyeonggi Province was closed due to a landslide.


I live in Southern Seoul and it is still raining…

So if this site goes down again sometime in the next day or two, you know why… but I am hoping the worst is over. I have also just realized that I lost about three weeks worth of work on an important project I was working on – my workstation drives shorted out from the lightning and I was in the middle of syncing a backup at the time, so I only have a partial copy on my server. All attempts at recovering the data have failed… %#&@*!

Update – count has risen to 32 people killed and 24 seriously injured and many more missing…

This is from CNN:

More than 750 rescue workers had been dispatched to the site after the collapse occurred at midnight, according to the Central Disaster Relief Center.

About 400 families have lost their homes and more than 14,000 were left without power.

The hillside gave way during a summer of record-setting rainfall, which has caused flooding and major traffic disruptions across portions of the country.

Chuncheon is about 75 kilometers (45 miles) northeast of the capital, Seoul, which has seen more than 400 millimeters (15 inches) of rain since Tuesday.

Sixty households in the capital have been cut off by high water, and six people are missing, the disaster center reported.

The Korea Meteorological Agency has issued a special heavy rainfall alert for cities in the center of the country. The forecast calls for the downpour to continue at a rate of 60 millimeters (2.4 inches) per hour over the next day.

“This is a lot of rain considering that the amount we saw yesterday and today consists of three-quarters of what we got during the rainy season,” Cheung Kwan-young from the meteorological agency said.

South Korea typically experiences a rainy season during the summer.

9 thoughts on “The Awesome Power of Nature

  1. crazy that you went through that. even crazier that you took the time to get your server running asap rather than just taking a break and spending some time with the fam hangin back, i’m sure the kids were going crazy during that storm.

    • ohai xuzhin, actually my kids slept through the worst of it, my eldest son just got up during some of the really intense thunder and pointed at the window and said “wow rain” and then covered his head with a pillow because he just wanted to sleep lol

  2. Hi Conti hope all things are now better really it’s overflooded Seoul you have strong rains there i hope better than before my Friend and all People there

  3. We are all at one with nature but sometimes our lives make us blind or complacent. This kicks the cobwebs off and reminds us that we’re all made of star dust, scary as it is.

  4. Omg Conti that looks serious!
    I like thunderstorms too, but a storm like that would freak me out.
    You’re okay, right?

    • Harm: Ya although I live in the hardest hit part of seoul we live on a hill so fortunately we didn’t have to deal with the flooding, just the power surge frying some of my hardware… but the family and I are ok and that is what matters most.