Landslides Surge Through Seoul

The heavy rains have killed at least 32 people in Seoul and Chuncheon

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Heavy rains are currently battering South Korea, sending landslides through the capital, Seoul, and the northern town of Chuncheon that have killed at least 32 people and hundreds more homeless, according to the AP. The agency reports that 10 college students doing volunteer work died when "mud and debris engulfed them as they slept in a resort cabin in Chuncheon," and 16 people died in southern Seoul when "mud crashed through residences at the foot of a mountain." The AP adds that "witnesses interviewed on television likened the sound of the landslide to a massive explosion or a screaming freight train and described the screaming they heard as buildings were carried away by rivers of mud." In the picture above, rescue workers search for survivors among collapsed houses in Chuncheon. In the Getty picture below, a woman battles the floodwaters in Seoul:

The AP gives us a sense of Seoul's chaotic streets. In the second picture, people try to climb on top of a partially submerged car to escape the fast-moving water:

Vehicle damage is also extensive:

In this AP photo, rescue workers evacuate residents from a flooded area in Gwangju:

The AP adds that the images on South Korean TV have been dramatic--showing people bailing out a flooded subway station using shovels, brooms, and a wooden board, and officials rescuing hikers stranded on mountainsides. Online forums, the AP adds, are filled with complaints that the government "neglected to prepare for the downpours." South Korea's Yonhap News and SLR are also documenting the damage in photos.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.