An unusual cold wave accompanied by heavy rain and flooding hit Jerusalem on Thursday, causing heavy traffic jams, stranded drivers, flooded homes and even a number of cases of hypothermia.
Some 35 millimeters of rain and hail fell in the morning, flooding homes and roads especially in East Jerusalem.
A firefighters’ team commander, Sgt. Nir Abramovich, said his people were called to dozens of places to rescue people during the night. “Cars were trapped in large puddles, houses were flooded and [there were] many other incidents,” he said.
In many cases people were standing on their car roof, “freezing cold,” wet and alarmed, he said. “We drove up to them with the fire trucks, extracted them and took them to a safe place.
"We also took some people out of flooded houses. Some of them where shivering with cold and suffered from hypothermia,” he said. Several required medical care.
Police blocked Route 90, leading to the Dead Sea, to traffic due to the flooding between the Ein Gedi nature reserve and Metsoke Dragot.