An estimated 93% of buildings in northeast Israel marked as the most at risk will collapse in the event of a strong earthquake, State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman says in a new report, a month after a powerful tremor killed over 50,000 people in Turkey and Syria.
The 1,208 buildings earmarked in 2018 for urgent upgrading are close to the Great Rift Valley — an area prone to earthquakes — in cities and towns such as Tiberias, Safed, Beit She’an, Kiryat Shmona and Hatzor Haglilit. Despite repeated warnings, the vast majority of them haven’t been strengthened.
The ombudsman also says that out of 54 earmarked schools, only 38 — 70% — have been upgraded.
The report warns that at the current rate, it would take decades to protect all the existing at-risk buildings from earthquakes.