By PFC Lee, Dong Hyun, 2ID PAOJuly 16, 2013
CAMP RED CLOUD, South Korea - Every summer in Korea, there is a period when the whole country gets soaked in the rain. This period is called 'Chang-ma' in native Korean, the monsoon season of Korea.
Starting from the end of June, the North Pacific high and the Okhotsk high collide and form a monsoonal front, which goes directly through South Korea, bringing rain. Since the power of two air masses is almost the same at that time, the monsoonal front lasts until the end of July. More than half of the country's annual precipitation falls during this season. That is to say, when it rains, it pours in South Korea.
First it began with the 'dry monsoon season' in June when the monsoonal front had not yet reached the Korea peninsula. That dryness came to an end and the real rainy season came back. This year, the monsoon season came in earnest starting in July.
According to the Korea Meteorological Administration, this year's monsoon season will be characterized by frequent regional torrential rain. Therefore, increased flood damage, landslides and traffic accidents are expected. Since regional torrential rain comes suddenly, making preparations to alleviate damage in advance is encouraged.
The city of Uijeongbu, Dongducheon, Pyeongtaek where the 2nd Infantry Division's subunits are stationed are not the exceptions. In fact, many U.S. military installations have experienced flood and landslide damage during past summers. For example, in 1998, there was severe flood damage on Camp Red Cloud and the 2nd Infantry Division Museum was almost lost in water. In 2011, severe flooding and mudslides caused 19 perimeter fence breaches on Camp Casey.
Mitigation plans and alert systems on posts are being formed in order to avoid damage on installations and human life. However, Soldiers need to be more careful during training for the 'Fight Tonight' by checking the weather.
"Avoid camping and training in a wash or in the bottom of a canyon with steep
side slopes," said Michael Mills of Area I Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security. "Avoid low-water crossings and be especially cautious at night. Flood dangers are much more difficult to see in the dark."
Mills added, "Driving too fast through standing water can cause a car to hydroplane. The best defense is to slow down or pull well off the road."
This year's monsoon season is going to end in late July. The heat wave will start to cover the whole Korea Peninsula.
For information about road conditions call DSN 738-ROAD (7623), Commercial: 02-7918-7623. Also visit: http://www.2id.korea.army.mil/ for weather and other alerts.
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For more information about specific camps visit:
CRC/Stanley Planning Weather
Casey/Hovey Planning Weather
RLFC Planning Weather
2ID SWO Sharepoint
Asian Dust Monitor System
USFK Road Conditions
Area I Post Status and Road Conditions