Huge Fire in Northern Israel-getting close to Haifa.

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Eden, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    Fire disaster in Israel (you can watch a video in English at the bottom of the link):

    At least 40 people were killed and dozens were injured as the deadliest forest fire in Israel's history swept through the north of the country.
    A large number of the dead were Israeli Police officers and firefighters, who were on their way to assist.
    Among the injured, is Ahuva Tomer, first woman to command major police station.

    Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu called it as a National Disaster, and asked help from the international community. The authorities in Israel are expecting to receive some 20 firefighting aircraft from Greece, France, Cyprus Spain, Croatia, Italy, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey and Russia.

    More than 12,000 northern Israel residens were evacuated from their homes. The fire is getting close to Haifa, and the city's large University of Haifa. Officials are fear that some of Haifa neighborhoods will have to be evacuated as well, because of the strong winds that make the situation even worst.
    Firefighters are not optimistic, and declared that they lost control :(
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
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  2. MikiAndoFan#1

    MikiAndoFan#1 Well-Known Member

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    :( How sad. I hope they extinguish the fire soon, so that no more people get hurt.
     
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  3. soxxy

    soxxy Guest

    How terrible. Saying prayers that they can get the fire under control.
     
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  4. Buzz

    Buzz Well-Known Member

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    That is terrible and hope the fire gets put out soon. My heart goes out to the victim's families and all those who have been affected by the fire.
     
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  5. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    Praying!
     
  6. sweetsparky

    sweetsparky Well-Known Member

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    Terrible :(. I hope they can control the fire soon.
     
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  7. paskatefan

    paskatefan Well-Known Member

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    OMG! My thoughts and prayers are with Israel during this very trying time.
     
  8. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

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    Praying, also, that the fire is controlled soon.
     
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  9. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    Keep your prayers please, I'm afraid Israel is in need of those.
    First massive evacuations efforts began from the city of Haifa :eek:
    Haifa's Mayor is pleading the residents of the Denia neigborhood to listen to the rescue efforts with "minimum drama". The Israeli TV is calling residents of this area to leave their houses according to the instructions.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2010
  10. Civic

    Civic New Member

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    Doesn't Andrey live in Haifa? I hope his home isn't in danger. This afternoon NPR reported that over 30 female inmates died when the authorities were trying to evacuate a prison near Haifa.
     
  11. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

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    How awful! I hope they can get it under control ASAP.
     
  12. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    Yes, he does.
    His last post on FSU was almost 40 minutes ago, so I think he is fine.
     
  13. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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  14. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

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    Prayers to those with family and friends in the vicinity.
     
  15. ChelleC

    ChelleC Well-Known Member

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    Prayers for all in the area. :(
     
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  16. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

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    I'm in Haifa and was at the university yesterday, so could see the fire from a pretty early stage and how it got progressively worse. At this point I think that in Haifa itself, only parts of Denya are being evacuated - a friend left with her family about an hour ago. If there's anyone else here from Haifa, I hope they're safe and won't be affected.

    I know that other countries are sending assistance and we're very grateful. This is beyond anything our own firefighting forces can deal with.
     
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  17. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    With only 106 fire trucks and 360 firefighters for the entire state, and not even one proper aircraft to help in cases like that, Israel definitly can not fight such a massive fire by itself.
    First aid, including 100 firefighters from Bulgaria, arrivied to Israel, and is going to join the local rescue forces shortly.
    The goal right now is to stop the fire from spreading, to stop it completely will take few days, said Menachem Caspi one of the commanders of the Israeli firefighting forces.
     
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  18. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    Carmel wildfire contained after 77 hours.

    2 suspects (teenagers from the village of Usafiya) were arrested. The police suspects they were the one to begin it all.

    41 people lost their lifes, most of them rescue person. The youngest victim is 16 years old volunteer. :(


    Benyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli PM, thanked all the international forces that came to help Israel fighting its deadliest fire.

    This incident is a wake up call for Israel. For years the firefighters complained that they need more budgets in order to provide the right services. Actually they were the only sector in Israel, who went on strike not for getting salary benefits, but to tell the Israeli public and above all to the Israeli governments (the current government is not the only one responsible for this negligence) that since 1995 nothing happened in that area.
    Now, it is a priority not only because of what happened in the past few days, but also due to the fact that Hezbolla in South Lebanon celebrated Israel's weakness.
    They celebrated too fast, IMO. Now Lebanon is burning, :( and asking the International community for help. Luckily for Lebanon, no casualties there.

    PS = Haaretz published photos of the final moments of the bus with the rescue person. Haaretz.
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010
  19. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

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    Glad it has been contained ... hope that it will be completely extinguished soon.
     
  20. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

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    I had read earlier arson was suspected, but apparently now fire chiefs believe it wasn't deliberate. If that's the case, what would the teens be charged with?
     
  21. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

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    There are several possibilities ... if they set a fire that spread inadvertently, it could still be some sort of malicious mischief or some sort of criminal negligence. Or, if any fires are banned in a particular area, then they could be charged even if they didn't intend any harm or damage.
     
  22. Eden

    Eden Well-Known Member

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    What attyfan said, they probably will be charged with negligence with 3 years prison time.
    The suspects are minors (14 and 15 years old brothers). The Israeli law is usually less severe with minors. Though in this case, police said that those teenagers were already warned few times before from doing this. It turned out that they liked to set fire, and smoke their nargila. If this is the case, then it means that they already have a record of doing it.
    The teenagers' parents, BTW, are mostly fear from a blood feud. Usafiya is a Druze village (with 5% Muslim and 15% Christian Arabs), and some of the victims are Druze.
    So they are claiming not guilty, even though there is a strong evidence against them.

    BTW, the arson option was dropped almost immediately after the fire began. Firefighters said over and over again on the Israeli media that it was due to negligence.
     
  23. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

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    The two teenagers were released from custody today - I don't know what the situation is with the investigation, but a district judge reversed the decision to extend their arrest.

    On a sad note, the number of victims rose to 42 after Haifa's police chief, Ahuva Tomer, died earlier today; she had been near the prison service bus and suffered from severe burns. Two men remain in hospital with serious burn injuries, a prison service cadet and a firefighter. I hope both will be able to recover.