Fire rages west of Jerusalem, arson suspected

Firefighters battle to bring Even Sapir blaze under control, prevent it from reaching Hadassah hospital

Fire rages near Moshav Even Sapir (image capture Channel2)
Fire rages near Moshav Even Sapir (image capture Channel2)

A large forest fire broke out near Moshav Even Sapir, west of Jerusalem, on Wednesday afternoon. Some of the moshav’s residents were ordered to evacuate their homes. Ynet reported that 39 teams of firefighters and four helicopters were called up to battle the blaze.

The blaze broke out in several locations, prompting suspicions of arson. Israel Radio reported that more than 50 dunams (12 acres) have burned. Firefighters cited difficult topography, high temperatures and heavy winds as the primary forces making the battle a more difficult one.

The road leading from the moshav to Hadassah hospital in Ein Karem was closed to traffic and firefighters were striving to bring the blaze under control before it got any closer to the hospital.

No injuries were reported.

Firefighters also battled two blazes near Haifa on Wednesday afternoon. The first fire was in the foothills of the Carmel, and the second in Kiryat Tivon, 15 kilometers (9 miles) southeast of Haifa. Five teams of firefighters were brought to the area to battle the Kiryat Tivon blaze.


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