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Photo: Tal Shahar
Damage from bushfire in Kibbutz Harel
Photo: Tal Shahar
Israelis homeless, reeling in aftermath of massively destructive wildfires
Some 1,000 firefighters battled the same number of fires over the course of almost three days that ravaged entire communities and damaged 50 houses; almost 8 dunams (2 acres) of land were scorched by the blaze
A wave of massive bushfires over the weekend, caused by an extreme heatwave, left dozens of families without homes as entire neighborhoods were engulfed by the flames.

 

 

Some 16 people suffered smoke inhalation and 13 others had light burns, including some of the 1,000 firefighters - from National Fire and Rescue Authority - who battled at least 1,023 conflagrations across the country.

 

Moshav Mevo Modi'im damaged by fire (Photo: AFP)
Moshav Mevo Modi'im damaged by fire (Photo: AFP)

 

In addition, 300 volunteers also participated in the operation, dubbed “Hot Fire” in the scorching temperatures that sometimes reached 45 degrees celsius.

 

Although damage to the property was great - with some 50 houses destroyed by the blaze - there were no reports of casualties.

 

Moshav Mevo Modi'im, where 40 out 50 houses were damaged by fire (Photo: AFP)
Moshav Mevo Modi'im, where 40 out 50 houses were damaged by fire (Photo: AFP)

 

The fires also caused a wide-scale damage to the environment with some 7,940 dunams (two acres) of land, belonging to the Nature and Parks Authority as well as Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael - Jewish National Fund, scorched by the massive flames.  

 

Damage in Kibbutz Harel

Damage in Kibbutz Harel

סגורסגור

שליחה לחבר

 הקלידו את הקוד המוצג
תמונה חדשה

שלח
הסרטון נשלח לחברך

סגורסגור

הטמעת הסרטון באתר שלך

 קוד להטמעה:

 

"The damage is immense not only to the forest but also to the wildlife,” said Gilad Mestai, director of the KKL-JNF for the Coastal Plain district. “Very large forested areas, the green lung of the Dan region, have been burned down," he said.

 

Aftermath of a fire in Mevo Modi'im (Photo: EPA)
Aftermath of a fire in Mevo Modi'im (Photo: EPA)

 

The residents of the communities that were damaged by the fire, have so far not been allowed to return to the homes, which they were forced to flee. At least 40 out of the 50 houses that were damaged by the fire are located in the religious moshav of Mevo Modi'im in central Israel.   

 

Mevo Modi'in fire damage    (צילום: עמית הובר, יאיר שגיא )

Mevo Modi'in fire damage   (צילום: עמית הובר, יאיר שגיא )

סגורסגור

שליחה לחבר

 הקלידו את הקוד המוצג
תמונה חדשה

שלח
הסרטון נשלח לחברך

סגורסגור

הטמעת הסרטון באתר שלך

 קוד להטמעה:

 

"Although this disaster has befallen us, Shabbat is sweet and gives us life" said Alon Tieger, chairman of the association that runs the moshav. “The way people of Israel opened their hearts to us, brought me to tears, and I did not cry when my house was burned."

 

Flames from Mevo Modi'im seen outside the moshav (Photo: Fire and Rescue Authority)
Flames from Mevo Modi'im seen outside the moshav (Photo: Fire and Rescue Authority)

 

The remaining 10 houses that were damaged by the fire are located in Kibbutz Harel - just outside Jerusalem - with five of the homes being burned down to the ground.

 

Damage from bushfire in Kibbutz Harel (Photo: Tal Shahar)
Damage from bushfire in Kibbutz Harel (Photo: Tal Shahar)

 

Ofir Alkalay, a kibbutz resident whose house was heavily damaged by the blaze, said his home - although still standing - is filled with smoke and various toxic substances.

 

Damage in Kibbutz Harel
Damage in Kibbutz Harel

 

“My house has been wrecked,” he said. “One of my children was sleeping inside the house when the fire started. My two children - aged five and ten - are traumatized … This is the kind of thing that greatly undermines the feeling of security.

 

"Most of our kibbutz has been burned down, some families lost their homes … all of our farmland has been damaged,” Alkalay added. “Since the fires broke out we haven’t been able to come back to our homes and we won’t be allowed to enter the kibbutz for at least another week due to heavy air pollution in the area.”

 

 


פרסום ראשון: 05.26.19, 14:01
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