Winter Finally Arrives, Heavy Downpours Cause Disruptions


People walk in the rain in Tzfas, Tuesday. (David Cohen/Flash90)

After a long stretch of warm and dry weather, Tuesday night offered new hope for the winter as thunderstorms poured copious amounts of water on Israel’s coast.

As of Wednesday morning, the storm has caused massive disruptions in multiple areas, with first responders helping motorists who had been stuck in flooded areas. One such incident almost ended in tragedy when a vehicle with four passengers fell into the strong currents of the Jordan River after trying to cross a bridge.

In central Israel, a man almost drowned after he was trapped in a locked car that had gotten stuck in a flooded area. He was rescued by firefighters and evacuated to receive medical care.

Meanwhile, Mount Hermon saw at least 30 centimeters (11 inches) of snowfall overnight Tuesday.

The blustery weather is expected to continue to pick up steam over the weekend and reach its peak on Sunday, with severe flood warnings issued for coastal cities, as well as flash floods in Israel’s eastern streams – including in the northern Negev and the Arava – mainly due to the low permeability of the soil.

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