Flash floods!


This photo, of today’s flash flood in Thimphu, was sent to me by Nedup. It shows a swollen Wangchu tumbling down from the Lungtenzampa Bridge. Nedup: thank you.

Continuous rain caused flash floods along the Thimphu valley throughout the day. Punakha, Paro, Haa and Bumthang are among the other valleys also hit by flash floods.

After quickly checking on the dzong area, Sunday Market and Changjiji, I spent the rest of the day monitoring the situation in Parizampa, located slightly upstream from Dechencholing. A log from the old bridge there had fallen into the river, but wouldn’t be swept away as its end was anchored securely to the Bailey structure. The log had to be removed. If it wasn’t, debris could build around it and create a temporary dam, causing even more danger downstream.

With the help of an excavator, RBG and RBA personnel were able to dislodge the log from the bridge and prevent a dangerous situation. I wish to thank the brave soldiers and officers of our armed forces. And thank Ap Gem Tshering, the proprietor of Druk Chachap Construction, who quickly organized and allowed us to use his excavator.

It’s not raining now. But the weather forecast is not good. We are told to expect rain for another two days. And that could mean even more flash floods. So we must work together, every one of us, to contain, as far as possible, the damage to life and property.


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  1. Please accept our heartfelt prayers for the safety of life and property of our Bhutanese friends.


  2. I commend Lyonpo Zimba and Lyonpo UTshering coming out on the disaster site and seeing the damages in person with their own eyes.

    One issue I would like to highlight and I am sure it is on everyone’s mind too is the serious drainage problems we have in the city. A small amunt of torrential rain and the towns are flooded. It has happened time and again every year and no one seem to take heed. The drainage either don’t exist or they are too small or blocked for ever. Another problem is the open drainages or ditches on teh walkway or on teh drive way. Have anyone recently driven (I am sure) by the lower pilice gate heading up to the chorten. There is a big ditch right in the middle of the road where cars or pedestrains can easily fall victim to. Who is responsible for it. It is right under the nose of the muncipality, the cops, and the RSTA but no one is taking care of it. We will not move until a fatal accident occurs.

    I know it is too petty to ask the honorable minister (Hon Lyonpo Yeshey Zimba) but could you kindly personaly look into it. Please take the concerned people to task and we will perhaps see many more ditches covered or taken care off within few days.

    Just concerned la.

  3. we hope that no further damage will be done because of the rain.
    I would like to convey my condolences to the families and freinds of the reported casualities in Kuensel. It is a tragedy.for the rest of us , we can heed to the alerts and be careful and continue to say our prayers. And most importantly, work together and listen to eachother. I really hope that actions will be taken as required. if further damage could be prevented , i think it has to be a priority…. otherwise….here’s an issue to discuss at the National Assembly , Hon’ble OL…..
    we would like to see a disaster management plan of action for future …. now that we know how prone we are … or always have known …..

  4. well the only positive thing i can see from this is the amount of energy generated at CHPC… but nevertheless, this is a serious issue. There are cities built on ocean, i am sure if we do the right thing, a flood like this would be of not much big concern in future.

    • Actually, the country generated less energy. DGPC had to shut down three projects (Kurichu, Basochu and Chukha). Only Tala was operating yesterday. The debris makes it dangerous to run the turbines. But yes, we must learn to prepare for more of these in the future. And perhaps even benefit from the sudden surge in water levels, especially during the dry season.

    The rivers of Bhutan are the backbone of our economy and the base of our civilization. But now most often our rivers shed their colour and engulf everything on their way down the plains. Can anyone predict the future of our rivers. I fear there are chances of more floods in the future, due to global climate change. The centuries old glaciers are melting with alarming rate. When glaciers, the birth place of our rivers are gone, guess what will happen……….
    Most stream sources had already dried up. Even the ponds fed by ground water were gone forever.Does every bhutanese know about this, the clock is ticking, we have to be ready for anything, though we are suffering in the hands of other large developed and developing Nations of the World who altered the earths Climate.

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