NIS 1.5 Billion to Reinforce Northern Security, Report Says

A view of border town Kiryat Shemona. (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

In light of the ongoing tension in northern Israel, security officials have devised a new plan to ensure the safety of residents. The plan, unveiled Wednesday on Army Radio, includes sprucing up and modernizing hundreds of bomb shelters and safe rooms, and the construction of hundreds more. The NIS 1.5 billion plan will be rolled out over the next five years, and will include 300 local authorities located within 45 kilometers of the Lebanese and Syrian borders.

The plan will provide funds for the construction of safe rooms for each household in the covered areas, obviating the need for use of public safe rooms that many residents of apartment buildings and older homes have relied on until now. Officials estimate that some 200,000 of these rooms will be built. With that, over 500 public bomb shelters will be modernized as well, in order to ensure they can meet current security challenges.

Also to be updated will be security at public institutions. The covered areas have 800 schools and kindergartens, 65 community centers, and dozens of health and medical clinics. All these will be outfitted with safe rooms and bomb shelters, and the structures themselves will be reinforced to better protect those inside from a first wave of missile strikes, ensuring they have the opportunity to get to shelter. In addition, security measures will be provided for hospitals in the area, with additional facilities for the shelter of patients who are bed-bound in the event of a security emergency, the report said.