First Carmel fire victims identified, as Israel grapples with national tragedy
Medical crews continue task of identifying brushfire victims, most of whom died on a Prison Service bus consumed by flames en route to aid a prison evacuation.
As medical crews labor through the difficult task of identifying the victims of a massive brushfire ravaging Israel's north, Israel Police released Friday the names of eight of those who found their death in the blaze.
Most of the dead from the blaze were students on the Prison Service's guards' course on their way to the Damon jail to help evacuate inmates there. When a fallen tree blocked a road, their bus was trapped in the flames, killing as many as 40 passengers.
These are the names of those killed in the incident involving the Prison Service bus:
Topaz Even-Hen Klein, 28, married, Rehovot resident. Her funeral will take place at 12:00 P.M. on Friday at Rehovot's military cemetery.
Maor Ganon, 27, married with child, Gan Yavne resident. His funeral will take place today at 12:00on P.M. Friday at the Yavne military cemetery.
Yakir Swisa, 26, Dimona resident. His funeral will take place at 12:00 P.M. on Friday at Dimona's military cemetery.
Kfir Ohana, 30, married with child, Ofakim resident. His funeral will take place on Friday, 1200 P.M., at Ofakim's military cemetery.
Siom Tzagi, 31, married with 3 children, Netivot resident. His funeral will take place at Netivot's military cemetery at 11:30 P.M. Friday
Hagai Jorno, 28, married with child, resident of Kiryat Gat. His funeral will take place at Kiryat Gat's military cemetery at 12:00 P.M. Friday.
Oshrat Pinto, 26, Safed resident. Her funeral will take place at Safed's military cemetery at 12:00 P.M. on Friday.
Biber Shadi, 35, married with child, resident of Kfar Jat. His funeral will take place at the Kfat Jat community center at 12:00 P.M. on Friday.
Adal Tapsher, 33, married with two children, resident of Beit Jann. His funeral will take pace at 12:00 P.M. in Beit Jann,
Eran Wiesel, 31, married with one child, resident of Kiryat Bialik. His funeral will take place at 12:00 P.M. in Haifa.
Commenting on the deadly incident involving the Prison Service bus, one Prison Service guard said that "the shock here is great…there was hardly a detention center that didn't lose prison guards in this disaster."
"It's a grave disaster. Grave for the families and for us as well. These were guards from all over the country, some veterans and others novices, we will have to deal with this disaster, to accompany the families and support crew members for the next few days," the officer added.
Over 15,000 residents, including 600 prison inmates, were evacuated as the blaze raged out of control, devastating hundreds of acres of pine forest before sweeping down the slopes of the Carmel plateau towards Israel's third largest city.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hurried to the scene of the Carmil conflagration Thursday evening, calling the fire a "disaster on an international scale." Israel had requested international aid to deal with the blaze, which was out of control, he said.
"We do not have what it takes to put out the fire, but help is on the way. As a result of calls I have made, there are currently ten aircraft on their way to Israel from Greece, France and Cyprus," Netanyahu said.