Japan, Korea Exchanges Escape Major Damage from Typhoon Hinnamnor


Exchanges in South Korea and Japan escaped damage and all associates were reported safe after Typhoon Hinnamnor, the strongest Pacific storm of the season, made landfall in eastern Asia during the weekend.

A satellite photo taken Sept. 1 shows Typhoon Hinnamnor as it turned north toward Japan and Korea. (NASA Earth Observatory photo)

The storm’s biggest effect was on store openings. As of 9 a.m. Korea time on Tuesday, the Korea Southern and Kunsan Exchanges were closed and planning delayed opening on Tuesday. Kunsan delayed opening all facilities until noon. Korea Southern facilities were opened at 1 p.m.; On the east coast at Pohang, Marine Base Camp Mujuk also opened at 1 p.m.; Chinhae Navy Station on the south coast opened at 2 p.m.  The nearby Pusan Pier Express remained closed on Tuesday.

Sustained winds of 104 mph and gusts as high as 115 mph had been forecast for Tuesday morning at Chinhae.

Department of Defense Educational Activity schools were closed Tuesday at Osan Air Base and at Camps Walker and Humphreys. Other facilities at Humphreys and Osan were open as usual, as was the Korea Northern Exchange.

In Okinawa, Exchange operations were suspended at 8 p.m. Sept. 3. At 8:30 a.m. Sept. 4, the 18th Wing Commander directed U.S. bases on Okinawa to enter into Tropical Cyclone Condition of Readiness 1, the highest TCCOR level, as winds of 50 knots or greater occurred. But ultimately the Okinawa Exchange was unaffected.

“We were very lucky that the typhoon did not come close to us as was forecast”,  said Flor Payton, Okinawa Main Store Manager.  “None of our facilities sustained any major damage.   Once we received the ‘All Clear’ from the 18th Wing,  the team jumped into action and reopened facilities in less than two hours.”

According to The New York Times, flooding created the biggest impact in South Korea, where the port city of Pohang was hardest hit. Pohang is about 45 miles east-northeast of Camp Walker.

In September 2019, Typhoon Lingling struck the Korea Distribution Center, damaging freezers used for the DoDEA school meal program and Exchange restaurants, resulting in the loss of $1.3 million in food product.




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1 Comment

  1. Gayle Middaugh on September 7, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    So glad everyone is safe!

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