Report: Defense Ministry Seeks Solutions for a Million Earthquake Victims

An earthquake drill at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Yerushalayim. (Flash90, File)

The Defense Ministry is actively drawing up plans to enable the country to cope with a major earthquake, a report in Haaretz said Monday. Among other things, the plan includes the possibility of setting up temporary quarters to house as many as a million refugees who will be unable to live in homes that are likely to be badly damaged or destroyed by a major earthquake.

The Ministry in recent weeks issued a request for suppliers to provide information on what they could provide in the event of such an emergency. The request for information sought data on temporary housing, medical care in the field, logistics to supply food, and rebuilding activities. The temporary housing situations in the event of an earthquake could last as long as three months, the Ministry believes.

The living quarters would be either in tents or quickly constructed fiberboard dwellings that would be suitable for families – with bedrooms for parents and children, living and dining rooms, washroom facilities and a kitchen. Suppliers of the homes would also have to provide electricity, water and sewage services. It is expected that as many as 230,000 families would have to be housed in these dwellings, the report said.

The information that the suppliers provide to the Ministry will reflect the work they can do and the products and services they can supply. The Ministry will use the information to develop tenders which will be issued, with the suppliers bidding on the projects that the Ministry seeks to enact, the report added.