2 homes razed as firefighters battle blazes in central Israel, Negev
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2 homes razed as firefighters battle blazes in central Israel, Negev

Houses, cars destroyed in Sde Warburg; police open investigation into fire at outdoor desert rave party

Illustrative photo of firefighters, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Illustrative photo of firefighters, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

Firefighters on Saturday battled several blazes across the country, including one that destroyed two homes in central Israel, as a weekend heatwave brought unseasonably high temperatures.

In Sde Warburg near Kfar Saba, 16 firefighting crews battled to put out a large fire that burned a couple of homes, a storage shed and four cars.

Local residents were evacuated until the blaze was brought under control. No injuries were reported.

Firefighters on Saturday afternoon also battled a large blaze outside Kibbutz Dvir in the Negev Desert. Reports said the fire was sparked by party-goers at an outdoor rave nearby. Police have opened an investigation into the cause of the incident.

On Saturday, temperatures in Jerusalem climbed to 33ºC (91.4ºF), Tel Aviv sizzled at 37ºC (98.6ºF), Eilat reported a high 38ºC (100ºF) and Beersheba reached a scorching 40ºC (104ºF).

The heatwave is expected to break overnight and temperatures will drop some 12-16ºC across the country.

Late last year Israel was ravaged by a series of devastating blazes that were sparked by an extreme spell of dry windy weather, but also by several cases of arson. Those fires destroyed hundreds of homes across the country, with Israel calling for help from the international community to quell the fires.

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