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So I was in South Korea on March 14, by the War Memorial of Korea and the Yongsan Garrison and heard what sounded like an air raid siren. I did a Google search. Apparently I wasn't the only one that heard this:

http://clifabroad.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/we-just-had-an-air-raid-siren-test/

My question is... what was this? I'm pretty sure there wasn't a surprise attack by North Korea. Do they conduct periodic city-wide or nation-wide drills from time to time?

I also saw a fighter jet flying north (as determined with my compass)

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The blog post you cite seems to explain it quite detailed: "Civil Defense Drill. It occurs five times a year nationwide in South Korea." - what more do you want to know? –  Michael Borgwardt Mar 17 at 9:42
    
I didn't see that lol. Oh well.. –  neubert Mar 17 at 11:01

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

I think there is explanation of your question http://guidetokorea.wordpress.com/2011/11/15/air-raid-sirens-in-seoul-no-cause-for-alarm/

the siren will most likely only ever be a test out here. Check the time if you do hear it. 11am or 2pm on the dot are generally the test times. The siren will last 2-3 minutes then stop.

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MikkaRin has it right, these drills aren't anything to be concerned about. When they do happen, traffic is meant to come to a halt (some choose to ignore) and things generally go quiet except for the sirens. Seeing fighter jets was a daily norm for me (lived in Ulsan for a year) and they are always out and about, but nothing to be concerned of.

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