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一家三口被淹死在半地下室:韩国洪灾凸显贫困人口窘境

‘We Couldn’t Do Anything’: Family Drowns in Seoul Basement During Floods
一家三口被淹死在半地下室:韩国洪灾凸显贫困人口窘境

SEOUL — At 4:40 p.m. on Monday, the 13-year-old girl texted her ​72-year-old ​grandmother ​who was ​in the hospital, wishing her well and saying that she was praying for her quick recovery.

首尔——周一下午4点40分,13岁的女孩给住院的72岁外祖母发了短信,祝她健康,说自己祈祷祖母能早日康复。

“How sweet of you, my little puppy!” the grandmother texted back.

“你真好,我的小狗崽!”外祖母回短信说。
 

周一,首尔一处半地下住宅的楼梯。两名女性和一名13岁的女孩在洪水中丧生。

That was the last time she ​talked with her granddaughter.

那是她最后一次和孙女说话。

Four hours later, floods triggered by one of ​South Korea’s heaviest rainfalls gushed down the steps into the three-room, semi-underground home in southern Seoul where the teenager had lived with her mother, 47, and her aunt, 48.

四小时后,韩国最大规模的降雨之一引发的洪水顺着台阶,冲入了首尔南部一座有三个房间的半地下住宅,这名少女同她47岁的母亲和48岁的姨妈就住在这里。

The family had moved into the house seven years ago. They knew the low-lying district was prone to flooding, but it was cheap and close to a government welfare center where the aunt, who had Down syndrome, could get help.

这家人是七年前搬进这所房子的。她们知道低洼地区容易发生洪水,但这里很便宜,而且离政府的一个福利中心很近,患有唐氏综合征的姨妈可以在那里得到帮助。

The heavy rainfalls that struck the Seoul metropolitan area from Monday until early Wednesday left six people missing and at least nine dead, including the family of three, highlighting the predicament of South Korea’s urban poor as well as the country’s housing crisis and growing inequality.

从周一到周三凌晨,首尔市区遭遇暴雨袭击,导致六人失踪,至少九人死亡,其中包括这一家三口,这凸显出韩国城市贫困人口的窘境,以及该国的住房危机和日益严重的不平等。

The water rolled down with such force that the family could not push their only door open, according to neighbors and emergency officials. The girl’s mother banged on the door and called her ​neighbors for help. The neighbors called ​the government’s 119 emergency response hotline ​on the family’s behalf, ​but so many flood victims were dialing in that their calls did not go through. ​

据邻居和紧急事务官员说,洪水汹涌而下,一家人无法推开唯一的一扇门。女孩的母亲砰砰敲门,打电话给邻居寻求帮助。邻居们帮这家人拨打了政府的119应急热线,但由于有很多受灾者都在拨打电话,电话没有接通。

Two neighborhood men tried to rescue the family through the house’s street-level window, but they could not go through the anti-theft, steel grating blocking the window. “The water filled the house so quickly we couldn’t do anything about it,” Jeon Ye-sung, 52, a neighbor, ​told reporters.

附近的两名男子试图通过房子临街的窗户营救这家人,但窗户装了防盗钢栅栏。52岁的邻居全艺成(音)告诉记者,“水很快就灌满了房子,我们束手无策。”

Mr. Jeon ​rushed home on Monday evening after his daughter ​told him on the phone that the water was gushing through the windows into their ​own ​semi-underground home. He broke the windows to rescue his three daughters. But​ he and another neighbor could not reach his neighbors.

全艺成在周一晚上匆忙赶回家,因为女儿打电话告诉他,水正从窗户涌进他们位于半地下的家。他打破了窗户救出他的三个女儿。但是他和另一个邻居联系不上那家邻居。

By the time rescue officials pumped the water out early Tuesday, they found the family of three dead.

周二早上,救援人员把水抽出来时,发现这家的三个人已经死亡。

South Korea’s urban poor often live in banjiha, or semi-underground homes.​ The flood hazard of these underground homes was dramatically depicted in the South Korean movie “Parasite,” which became the first foreign-language movie to win the Academy Award for Best Film ​in 2020.

韩国的城市贫民通常住在“banjiha”,即半地下的房子里。2020年首次获得奥斯卡最佳影片奖的外语片《寄生虫》生动表现了这些地下家园面临的洪水危险。

One of the nine dead was a woman in her 50s who also lived in a semi-underground home in Seoul. She fled the floodwater but returned to her home to rescue her cat and didn’t make it out alive.

九名死者中有一名50多岁的女性,她也住在首尔一处半地下的房子里。她逃离了洪水,但为了救她的猫又回到家中,结果没能活着出来。

In Seoul, a city where sky-high housing prices are one of the biggest political issues, living high and dry in tall apartment buildings built by the country’s conglomerates like Samsung and Hyundai is a status symbol​.

在首尔,天价房价是最大的政治问题之一,住在三星和现代等韩国企业集团建造的高层公寓楼里是一种身份的象征。

But the poor often live in cheap, damp and musty banjiha. Hundreds of thousands live in such homes in the congested metropolitan area, where they struggle to find jobs, save money and educate their children to overcome growing inequality.

但穷人往往住在廉价、潮湿、发霉的banjiha。在拥挤的大都市地区,成千上万的人住在这样的房子里,他们努力找工作、存钱、教育孩子,希望克服日益严重的不平等。

Over the years, Seoul has offered to help those living in such basement apartments, providing them with pumps and other equipment to fight floods. It has also renovated sewer systems in low-lying districts to help drain rainwater more quickly. The government has urged those living in semi-underground basements to move to state-owned apartments with cheap rents.

多年来,首尔一直在主动帮助住在这种地下室公寓里的人,为他们提供水泵和其他防洪设备。政府还对低洼地区的下水道系统进行了改造,以便更快地排水。政府敦促那些住在半地下地下室的人搬到租金便宜的国有公寓。

Still, thousands of families live in banjiha, fearing floods each monsoon season. They build small dikes with sandbags around their homes. When the floodwater recedes, they put their clothing and furniture in alleyways to dry. In a survey in 2020, more than half of the 500 semi-underground households in two districts in Siheung, just southwest of Seoul, reported their homes submerged in rainwater.

尽管如此,仍有成千上万的家庭生活在banjiha,一到季风季节就对洪水提心吊胆。他们用沙袋在房屋周围筑起小堤坝。洪水退去后,他们把衣服和家具放在巷子里晾干。在2020年的一项调查中,首尔西南方向的始兴市两个区的500户半地下家庭中,超过一半的家庭报告说,他们的房子曾被雨水淹没。

“When I returned home from work, I found my banjiha under water,” a semi-underground dweller wrote on the South Korean web portal Naver on Tuesday. “It felt as if heaven had crashed down on me.”

“下班回家,发现我的banjiha被水淹没了,”周二,一位半地下居民在韩国门户网站Naver上写道。“感觉就像天塌了。”

On Tuesday, when President Yoon Suk-yeol visited the neighbor​hood where the family of three died, their home was still filled with waist-high​ floodwater. Pillows, furniture and plastic bags floated inside. Mr. Yoon had to squat on the street outside to look down into the home through the street-level window.

当天,韩国总统尹锡悦前往死者一家所在的社区时,他们的家仍然被齐腰高的洪水淹没。枕头、家具和塑料袋漂浮在里面。尹锡悦只得蹲在外面的街上,从临街的窗户往房间里看。

The neighborhood was strewn with bags of garbage, rain-damaged furniture and electronics that families dragged out of their basement homes. “There is hardly anything we can salvage,” said Park Kyong-ja, 77, who has lived in the neighborhood for 26 years.

附近到处都是一袋袋的垃圾、被雨水损坏的家具和电子产品,这些都是各家各户从地下室的家中拖出来的。77岁的朴京子(音)说:“我们几乎没有什么可以挽救出来的东西。”她在这里住了26年。

Choi Tae-young, the head of the Seoul Metropolitan Fire and Disaster Headquarters, blamed the floodwater for blocking the door of the family’s home. But neighbors accused the government of failing to alert residents to the coming floods. The city did not warn of the danger of a nearby stream overflowing until 9:21 p.m. Monday, according to local media and neighbors.

首尔市火灾和灾难总部负责人崔泰永(音)称,事故的原因是洪水堵住了这家人的大门。但是邻居们指责政府没有提醒居民即将到来的洪水。据当地媒体和邻居报道,直到周一晚上9点21分,该市才警告附近的一条河流有溢出的危险。

From inside their home, the family of three called neighbors between 8 p.m. and 9 p.m., appealing for help because they could not get out. The teenager’s mother, who was identified by the police and local media only by her last name, Hong, also called her mother in the hospital at 8:37 p.m., saying that she could not open the door because of the floodwater, according to the daily newspaper JoongAng Ilbo.

晚上8点到9点,这一家三口在家里给邻居打电话求助,说她们出不去。据《中央日报》报道,警方和当地媒体只知道这名少女的母亲姓洪(音),她还在晚上8点37分给住院的母亲打电话,说因为洪水,她打不开家门。

“When I got out and rushed to their home, it was already filled with water and I could not see the inside,” Kim In-sook, a neighbor, told reporters. Police and firefighters could pump out the water only hours later.

邻居金仁淑(音)告诉记者:“当我出门赶到她们家时,屋里已经被水淹没,我看不到里面。”几小时后,警察和消防队员才把水抽出来。

Hong Seok-cheol, 46, who lives in a semi-underground home next door, left at 7:45 p.m. on Monday to eat out with his wife. When the couple returned home 40 minutes later, they were shocked to find the alleyway flooding. Their home was filled with water.

46岁的洪锡哲(音)住在隔壁半地下住宅,他于当天下午7点45分离家和妻子外出用餐。40分钟后,当这对夫妇回到家时,他们震惊地发现小巷被淹没了。他们的家里灌满了水。

“The rain came so fast and furious and the pressure on drainage pipes underground was so strong that they burst open, worsening the flood,” Mr. Hong said. “There was no way my wife and I could have made out if we had been trapped inside.”

“雨下得又快又急,地下排水管道的压力太大,爆裂开来,加剧了洪水,”洪锡哲说。“如果我和妻子被困在里面,是不可能逃出来的。”

Some of the household items belonging to the family of three sat outside the four-story building on Wednesday, including a white teddy bear. In the underground garage, four cars were caked with mud.

周三,这个三口之家的一些家用物品被放在这座四层建筑的外面,其中包括一只白色的泰迪熊。在地下车库里,有四辆糊满泥浆的车。

“The torrential rainfall was the worst in 115 years,” Mr. Yoon, the president, said during a meeting with emergency response officials on Wednesday. “The poor and the weak are more vulnerable to natural disasters. Our country will become safe when they feel safe​.”

“这次暴雨是115年来最严重的一次,”尹锡悦周三在与应急响应官员的会议上说。“穷人和弱者更容易受到自然灾害的伤害。只有当他们感到安全的时候,我们的国家才会安全。”
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