Clearing all debris takes about a week

Tshering Namgyal | Mongar

Road officials are working to reopen the Mongar-Lhuentse road to traffic after the road’s formation width was washed away in Dorjilung, commonly known as Ropashong.

Landslide at 8:30am yesterday morning washed away about 100m of the road.

Road officials said the regional office in Lingmethang is currently working on alternatives to restore the formation width but continuous sinking is hampering the progress.

The regional office has hired an excavator from the locality. The machine was deployed at the site last evening. National workforce workers from the nearby camps were also deployed to clear the roads manually in convenient areas and blast boulders.

The site engineer, Geyleg, said an excavator has been hired from a private owner in Jarey gewog to clear the road in the absence of a dedicated standby machine that used to be kept at the sinking area every summer.

He said although the road would open to traffic today evening, restoring the road might take about a week.

Although 100s of vehicles were stranded on either side of the block, passengers were trans-shifted.

Meanwhile, given a perennial issue of sliding and blockage every summer, the government planned to construct Mongar-Autsho road as a bypass. However, the much excited plan got stuck after the road reached upper Chali from Gorbaktang from Mongar side and Autsho to Gumbrang from Lhuentse side.

With the road between Gumbrang and Takhambi in Tsakaling gewog connected recently, the road has become shorter. An alternative route will be in place if only Takhambi and Tsakaling connects.

Zhabtog Lyonpo, Dorji Tshering, who is on his eastern tour, is expected to visit the site today.

Edited by Tashi Dema