The roadblock at Zalamchu in Tsheringma Drupchu opened to traffic yesterday evening. Zalamchu is about 25km away from Trongsa towards Wangduephodrang.

The road was closed to traffic since the night of March 31 after the landslide and two huge boulders fell on the road. Few metres away from the block, the road’s width was washed off.

The block was expected to have occurred at around 10pm because of road widening activities and rain.

Officials from Department of Roads (DoR) said they deployed two excavators and a rock driller since yesterday morning to clear the block.

DoR’s chief engineer, Ugyen Dorji, said they managed to clear the boulders and debris yesterday morning; they took time in the formation width. “The road opened to both light and heavy vehicles at around 6pm yesterday.”

It was learnt that vehicles and passenger buses plying from Trongsa returned while  some vehicles waited at the site until the road opened to traffic.

About 15 light vehicles were stopped at Bjeezam checkpoint. “The buses were stopped at Trongsa town on going further due to the block,” a traffic police official said.

He also said traffic police stopped vehicles at Trongsa town to avoid traffic jam and casualities.

The officer also said that the small vehicles were stopped at Bjeezam hoping for the traffic to open in the evening. “Travelers with emergencies were allowed to travel yesterday night as the block was cleared.”

Meanwhile, Ugyen Dorji said that machinery and people are still at the site to monitor the situation. “The road may be blocked anytime but it is clear right now. We will continue to monitor it.”

Phurpa Lhamo