Snow Descends on Mount Hermon; Dozens Rescued From Floods Across Israel

Dozens rescued in over 200 separate reported incidences of flooding; major roads in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Nes Tsiona under water

Zafrir Rinat
Noa Shpigel
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A car stranded in a puddle in Haifa, November 21, 2020.
Zafrir Rinat
Noa Shpigel

Snow fell on Mount Hermon for the first time this year and several main roads in Tel Aviv have been closed to traffic amid heavy rains and flooding, the Meteo-Tech Weather Forecasting Company said on Saturday.  

Occasional rainfall continued in northern and central Israel and was accompanied by isolated thunderstorms. Temperatures dropped below the seasonal average, and cities and towns throughout the coastal plain experienced flooding.

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Dozens of people had to be rescued from floodwaters on Friday night and Saturday, in over 200 separate recorded incidents. In the central town of Nes Tziona, firefighters extracted 19 people trapped by flooding, and in Haifa, firefighters rescued 15 people in four different locations.

Snow fell in areas surrounding Israeli army posts on Mount Hermon, but not in the mount's ski site. The police said Saturday morning that they had blocked Tel Aviv's Rokah Boulevard in both directions due to flooding and drivers were instructed to use alternate routes.

The police also reported flooding in Allenby Street and Herbert Samuel Street in Tel Aviv, adding they were closing additional roads to traffic due to the stormy weather.

Meteo-Tech data shows the central city of Kfar Saba saw the highest level of precipitation, with about 107 millimeters of rain recorded there in the past 24 hours.  

The rainfall weakened in the afternoon. 

The sea level is projected to reach 150-270 centimeters (60-107 inches), with winds blowing up to 50 kilometer per hour.

Intermittent rain is still falling throughout Israel's coastal plain and to a lesser degree in the north. The Golan Heights area saw 39-30 millimeters of rain, the Lake of Galilee area got 42 millimeters, while Haifa got 80 millimeters. Tel Aviv, where heavy rain has been falling over the past few hours, got over 70 millimeters. 

Sunday is projected to be partially cloudy and temperatures are expected to slightly rise, with isolated showers in northern and central Israel. Monday will also be partially cloudy but clearer and temperatures will reach seasonal average. Tuesday will see a rise in temperatures and is expected to be hotter than the seasonal average for this time of year.

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