Rain Floods Central Israel, First Responders Rescue Stranded Motorists

Although rain is set to tail off on Sunday, very low temperatures and frost are anticipated in Israel at night ■ Lake Kenneret water level sees sharpest rises since the beginning of winter

Floods in Lod, on Sunday.
Floods in Lod, on Sunday.Credit: Ilan Assayag

Heavy rainfall and cold temperatures continued to engulf Israel on Sunday as emergency services were dispatched to rescue stranded motorists from flooded streets, and in the West Bank, from a swollen stream.

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In the West Bank, first responders from the police and fire department, as well as volunteers, rescued a man and an 11-year-old boy whose car was swept into the Kaneh stream. They were extracted near the settlement of Karnei Shomron and treated for mild hypothermia, Magen David Adom emergency services reported.

In the greater Tel Aviv area, emergency services rescued a man and a girl who became stranded in their car as a road flooded in Kafr Qasem northeast of Tel Aviv. South of the city, in the vicinity of Nes Tziona and Rehovot, stranded motorists were rescued from flooding in that area.

Rain in Israel's Ramla

Early Sunday morning, a number of streets in Lod, near Ben-Gurion International Airport, flooded and the police and municipal authorities decided to evacuate several homes in one city neighborhood.

The storm also brought additional snow to the Mount Hermon ski site in the Golan Heights with 10 more centimeters of snow at the lower part of the mountain and 25 centimeters at the upper part.

Snow on Mount Hermon, on the Golan Heights, on Sunday.Credit: Mount Hermon site
Rainy weather in Jerusalem, on Friday.Credit: Emil Salman

The ski resort was closed to visitors on Sunday due to bad weather conditions but is due to reopen on Monday. At this point only for visitors and not skiers, as a minimum of 50 centimeters of snow is required for the sky site to operate.

The stormy weather has also led to the sharpest rise in Lake Kinneret's water level since the beginning of this winter. The lake is now 1.83 m below its fullest point.

According to the Water Authority, from Thursday until Sunday morning, an average of 60–70 millimeters of rain have fallen in the Kinneret drainage basin, and the level of the lake has gone up 5 centimeters. Since the beginning of the hydrological year (in October), the lake has risen 20 centimeters. In an average rainy season, the level of the lake goes up by 1.60 meters.

Rain is in the forecast Sunday from the north of the country to the Negev, along with possible thunderstorms, hail and strong winds. There are flood warnings for the coastal plain, the coastal lowlands and the Jordan Valley as well as the Negev and Arava in the south.

The rain is predicted to begin tapering off in the afternoon Sunday, but cold temperatures and frost are forecasted in many areas of the country for Sunday night.

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