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Typhoon batters South Korea after drenching Japan

By Hyung-jin Kim

Associated Press

Published: Monday, Sept. 17 2012 3:15 a.m. MDT

High waves caused by Typhoon Sanba crash on Haeundae beach in Busan, south of Seoul, South Korea, Monday, Sept. 17, 2012.

Yonhap, Jo Jung-ho) KOREA OUT, Associated Press

SEOUL, South Korea — A powerful typhoon lashed South Korea with strong winds and heavy rains Monday, killing at least one person, leaving dozens of others homeless and triggering blackouts at many homes and businesses.

Typhoon Sanba was pushing northeastward and expected to move into eastern waters later Monday. North Korean won't get a direct hit, but the country's eastern areas could see strong rain and wind from its outer bands, according to South Korean weather officials.

Sanba knocked out power to nearly 30,800 homes and shops in South Korea, the state-run National Emergency Management Agency said in a statement. The storm also forced cancelations of about 330 flights and 170 ferries, it said. Huge waves battered the southern coast.

A 50-year-old woman died in a landslide in southeastern South Korea, and another woman was injured in a separate landslide, agency officials said. More than 70 people were left homeless, they said.

Before reaching South Korea, the storm hit Japan. About 67,000 homes in southwestern Japan lost power and some areas flooded. A man drowned Sunday while swimming in high waves off the southern Japanese island of Ishigaki, according to the coast guard.

In North Korea, which reported heavy casualties from another powerful typhoon last month, any heavy rain is a worry.

State media said Typhoon Bolaven killed 59 people and left 50 missing and 26,320 homeless. About 51,600 hectares (127,500 acres) of farmland were flooded, buried or washed away, the official Korean Central News Agency said Friday.

North Korea also suffered flooding and drought earlier this year. There are worries about how the country's farms will handle the severe weather. The United Nations said in June that two-thirds of the country's 24 million people were grappling with chronic food shortages.

Typhoon Bolaven left 15 dead and five missing in South Korea. Another typhoon hit the peninsula shortly after Bolaven, but it didn't cause any deaths in South Korea. North Korea also suffered little damage. It's not unusual for three typhoons to hit the Korean Peninsula in such a short time, according to the Korean Meteorological Administration.

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