Dozens of flights were cancelled and parks were closed in South Korea as powerful Typhoon Lingling gained momentum on its path towards the Korean peninsula.

The Korea Meteorological Association said the typhoon is expected to pass off the west coast of South Korea on Saturday afternoon before making landfall in North Korea on Saturday evening.

The agency warned of possible flooding, landslides and structural damage caused by strong rains combined with very strong winds expected nationwide until early Sunday.

North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency said “all the fields and units of the country are taking strict measures for preventing damage from flood and rainy winds”.

The storm was 185 miles south-west of the southern resort island of Jeju on Friday evening, moving north at 20mph with winds of up to 96mph, the South Korean weather agency said.

South Korea’s transport ministry said 80 flights were cancelled at Jeju International Airport as of Friday evening and that more flights are expected to be cancelled nationwide as the typhoon approaches.

The education ministry said about 300 schools in Jeju sent children home early on Friday to help their families prepare for the typhoon.

Seoul closed public parks and zoos on Friday evening and a city official said they will remain closed through Sunday.

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