Anchor: The most frigid weather so far this winter has gripped the Korean Peninsula Friday. The temperature in Seoul plunged to minus 15 degrees Celsius and the mercury dipped even further to minus 21-point-5 degrees in some northern parts of Gyeonggi Province.
Our Park Jong-hong explains what brought on this intensely cold snap.
Report: Residents around the country are bracing against the cold on this frigid Friday.
Weather experts say the sudden biting cold weather is due to a massive jet stream, that had been confined to the North Pole, becoming loose and spreading downward.
This is what also brought on the frosty climate change in the U.S. and Europe.
Normally this jet stream hovers around the middle latitude spinning rapidly and keeping the polar air from traveling south.
But global warming is being blamed for undermining that barrier which literally broke open.
As of Friday morning, snow clouds that formed over the West Sea are preventing the cold snap from moving further toward inland regions.
The Korea Meteorological Administration says that the freezing weather will taper off from late Saturday bringing the temperatures back to seasonal norms.
The intense cold has led to hundreds of cases of cold-weather triggered patients.
From December first last year to January tenth this year, the frigid cold took a toll on a total of 245 people, seven of whom lost their lives to hypothermia.
The Korea Centers for Disease Control said elderly people suffering from cardio and cerebral vascular diseases are at a higher risk of developing hypothermia as they have trouble maintaining their body temperatures. In an emergency situation, experts advise seeking immediate medical treatment as hypothermia is a life-threatening condition.
Park Jong-hong, KBS World Radio News.