After 11-hour search, 5 people found alive, clinging to boat, on Sea of Galilee
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After 11-hour search, 5 people found alive, clinging to boat, on Sea of Galilee

Large police force locates missing group of family and friends from Jerusalem; one said suffering from hypothermia

View of the Sea of Galilee as seen from the promenade of Tiberias on March 18, 2019 (David Cohen/Flash90)
View of the Sea of Galilee as seen from the promenade of Tiberias on March 18, 2019 (David Cohen/Flash90)

Rescue services overnight Sunday-Monday said they located five people who had gone missing after setting out in a boat on the Sea of Galilee some 11 hours earlier.

In a statement on Sunday evening, police said the five had sailed at 3 p.m. from the Dekel beach in the north of the lake, and had yet to return to shore.

At 2 a.m., rescue services said they located the group — a father, his two sons, and two friends, from Jerusalem — alive.

One member of the group was said to be suffering from hypothermia, while the others were described as lightly hurt.

Search crews found the group gathered on and around the half-submerged boat, which had apparently flipped over.

Last month, a Jerusalem man drowned in the northern lake after entering the water at a beach without a lifeguard. Police said naval units, helicopters and scuba teams assisted in the search for the man, Ariel Koslavski, 19.

The usually placid Sea of Galilee is Israel’s largest freshwater lake, covering around 166 square kilometers (64 square miles).

Its shores are lined with vacation sites that are often packed with tens of thousands of Israelis.

During Passover of 2018, the bodies of three young men were recovered from the lake after a week-long search. The three drowned after strong winds blew their rafts away from the shore.

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