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Windstorms damage homes in Wangdue

In several parts of Wangdue the roofs of several houses were lost to a windstorm last week.

According to the damage assessment conducted by the dzongkhag disaster team, roofs of at least five traditional houses, a hotel and a lhakhang were damaged by windstorms that occurred on March 5, 6 and 12.

In Rubesa gewog, the roof of a two-storeyed house in Japhu village was completely blown off, while the roof of a four-storeyed house in Bara village and a lhakhang were partly blown away. All the houses were insured according to the dzongkhag disaster focal person Sonam Tobgay.

He said the windstorm partly destroyed a two-storeyed hotel in Rukubji, Sephu gewog. The hotel was insured.

In Bjena gewog, two one-storeyed houses in Gophu and Gamakha villages and one two-storeyed house in Sersona village were affected. The house in Gophu village suffered major damage and was not insured, while the other in Gamakha lost half of its roof but was insured.

The roof of the two-storeyed house in Sersona was completely blown off. Owner Tshering Wangdi had constructed the house less than a year ago.

Tshering Wangdi said there was no one at home when the incident happened.

“We were yet to remove the damaged parts of the roof and timber from the roof and then there was a heavy downpour that further affected the already damaged components,” he said. “I am worried about how to recover from this loss, as we just completed the house with much difficulty.”

Sonam Tobgay said they have repeatedly stressed to people the importance of insuring their houses under the insurance premium category two. However, despite that many did not insure their houses or insured under category three or four, even when they have larger and new houses.

For instance, in Tshering Wangdi’s case, if he had insured his newly built house under rural housing insurance category two instead of three, he would be receiving Nu 50,000 as compensation and not just Nu 25,000.

For category two, the insurance premium people have to pay is Nu 565 per year while in category three they have to pay only Nu 200. Due to which many choose category three, officials said.

The inspection and damage assessments were completed within less than two days of each incident, officials said. The assessment reports will be submitted to the concerned authorities.

The Royal Insurance Corporation Ltd will also release compensations shortly.

Dawa Gyelmo | Wangdue

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