Kelzang Wangchuk | Samdrupjongkhar

A search party is still looking for a man washed away by a flash flood at Domphu along the Dewathang-Samdrupchholing highway, Samdrupjongkhar at around 1:30pm on June 18.

The rescue team consisting of armed force personnel, foresters, de-suups, villagers, officials from the Department of Road (DoR),  dzongkhag and gewogs evacuated four passengers, including a one-year-old child to Dewathang hospital from Domphu.

The Project DANTAK team rescued passengers and a bolero buried by a landslide

Since the road was blocked by a landslide before reaching Dewathang, the rescue team had to trans-shift the evacuees to reach the hospital.

The team also recovered the body of the 31-year-old man and handed it over to his wife and relatives on the same day. The deceased was a tshogpa in one of the chiwogs in Pemathang gewog.

The chief engineer of DoR regional office in Samdrupjongkhar, Kinzang Wangchuk said the rescue team used an excavator yesterday and will continue today.

The four passengers are in stable condition undergoing treatment at the Dewathang hospital.

One of passengers, Sherab Zam said they came to Samdrupjongkhar to obtain a license for a restaurant on June 17 from Samdrupchholing, adding that they went back to Samdrupchoeling on June 18.

“But we came back from Duemola and stayed at Ashikhar because the swollen Duemola river had washed away the bailey bridge,” she said.

She said they waited at the flood site because there was a block. Some passengers were out of the vehicle and planning to return to Samdropchoeling via the Indian highway.

“But the sudden flash flood washed two boleros and an alto car and six passengers, including a child. There were six vehicles and 19 passengers travelling that day,” Sherab Zam said.

Meanwhile, the rescue team recovered the bodies of the 63-year-old woman and her 21-year-old daughter at around 2pm on June 18. They were buried in a landslide when it submerged their shop at Tshothang in Lauri gewog early morning on the same day.

The bodies have been handed over to the deceased’s father and husband on the same day. The gewog officials, villagers, monks and de-suups helped to recover the bodies.