S. Korea's monsoon now longest on record at 50 days
Updated: 2020-08-12 17:02:26 KST
This year's monsoon is the longest on record in South Korea and still more rain is expected in the following days.
But the rain has subsided for now in Gyeonggi-do and Chungcheong-do provinces as well as Jeju Island. That rain has been replaced by heatwave warnings, but more downpours are on the way.
Experts say this year's unusual weather is due to a large area of cold air in the northern parts of the country which is preventing the monsoon front from moving up the peninsula.
"In order for the torrential rain to end, the North Pacific High has to push up the monsoon front. But because the cold air in the northwest is so strong this year, the cold air and the high pressure have been clashing for a long time in South Korea, causing an unusually long monsoon period."
Wednesday marked the 50th day of the monsoon season, breaking the previous record of 49 days in 2013.
Its expected to last until the 16th, which would be the latest end date for a monsoon season ending later than the record in 1987, when the monsoon lasted until August 10th.
What makes this year's monsoon more unusual is that the downpours are hard to predict.
"The so-called "sporadic heavy rain" means that the rain is suddenly created by the rain clouds.
Because the cold air in the North and the North Pacific High are equally strong, the heavy rain clouds have been explosively compressed in between them. And also, the inflow of vapour into South Korea has led to heavier rain this year."
These changes as well as the current heat waves are due in part to climate change.
The temperature of the Arctic Circle is higher than usual, which determines the climate of South Korea., causing more rain or more heat.
Experts say, since it is very difficult to forecast the weather changes at the moment, it is important to take precautions to stay safe from extreme weather events.
Kim Sung-min, Arirang News.