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Blaze near Taoz
Firefighters fear worst not yet over as temperatures continue to rise
As Friday dawned, firefighters surveyed the damage caused by massive wildfires that threatened Kibbutz Harel and almost wiped out Mevo Modi'im, in addition to many other blazes; unseasonably high temperatures reaching 48C maintain fear that more yet to come

The massive blaze that threatened Kibbutz Harel on Thursday was likely caused by a falling electric cable in a nearby town; six homes were damaged there. In Mevo Modi'im, 40 of the town's 50 homes were damaged and thousands of residents from those two regions spent the night at hospitality centers. Emergency services battled multiple wildfires throughout the country on Thursday.

 

 

Residents describe the hard feeling of having to flee for their lives as they watched the fire engulf the woods around their homes, not knowing if they would have where to return to when it was over.

 

Kfar Uriyah blaze
Kfar Uriyah blaze

 

Firefighters resting near Tarom
Firefighters resting near Tarom

Mevo Modi'im, the aftermath
Mevo Modi'im, the aftermath

Mevo Modi'im suffered major damage
Mevo Modi'im suffered major damage


Homes damaged, Harel
Homes damaged, Harel

 

Firefighter spokesman Udi Gal said Friday morning that the advance of the fires has been stopped and the main focus at the moment is in the area of Tarom, just north of Beit Shemesh in the Judean hills. The conflagration at Harel was mostly under control, he said.

 

Firefighters battled flames all night
Firefighters battled flames all night

 

However, because the weather remains quite dry and the temperature is expected to rise even further Friday, after two days of unseasonably high temperatures, firefighting officials are warning the public to refrain from lighting fires outdoors and to heed instructions from emergency services.

 

Major blaze near Tarom
Major blaze near Tarom

Homes destroyed in Harel
Homes destroyed in Harel

Mevo Modi'im Thursday (Photo: Fire and Rescue Authority)
Mevo Modi'im Thursday (Photo: Fire and Rescue Authority)

Near Elad
Near Elad

Near Kibbutz Harel
Near Kibbutz Harel

In the area of Harel
In the area of Harel

On Thursday, Israel reached out to countries including Greece, Cyprus, Italy and Croatia for assistance in dealing with the wildfires. Due to recent tensions between the two countries, help was not requested from Turkey.

 

Israelis sizzled in sweltering heat, as the weather reached scorching temperatures across the country. By Thursday afternoon, Tel Aviv and the northern city of Haifa both saw some 40 degrees celsius. In the southern city of Be’er Sheva, temperatures rose to 44 degrees, while the Dead Sea region experienced 48 degrees.

 

Harel
Harel

 

Near Kibbutz Harel
Near Kibbutz Harel

 

Firefighting brigades mobilized all available units and are using planes and dozens of fire trucks to try to stamp out the flames still burning in several locations.

 

Firefighting services said that some of the fires might have started as a result of Lag B’Omer bonfires not being extinguished properly overnight.

 

 


פרסום ראשון: 05.24.19, 10:32
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