Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tragic Bus Accident near Elat

MDA (Magen David Adom emergency medical and rescue)received the first report at 3:00 PM of a bus accident, 12 kilometers north of Elat on highway 12 (the road that goes north-south along the Israel-Egyptian border)

As of 4:21 -- there are reports of at least 24 dead, and 32 wounded, many of them seriously. The bus was transporting European tourists who had just landed an hour earlier at the Ovda landing strip airport, and the bus flipped over 60 meters (250 feet) off the road into a wadi below.

So far over 34 ambulances, 5 Mobile ICUs, 1 mass casualty mobile unit, and 5 medivac helicopters have been dispatched to the scene to offer emergency services and transport to Eilat's Yoseftal hospital and others.

The Yoseftal hospital has announced a general call up for all doctors in the Eilat and Negev region to please come to the Yoseftal hospital to offer medical assistance.

(More here on ynetnews in English)

Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael טובה הארץ מאד מאד


Baila said...

I hate that road down to Eilat. When we drove there and back last year, I was white-knuckled the whole way. Is there anyway accidents like this can be prevented.

Sincere condolences to all the grieving families.

Lurker said...

Baila: Is there anyway accidents like this can be prevented.

Sure there is. Israeli bus drivers should stop careening like maniacs at breakneck speeds at the edges of cliffs.

Btw, from what I heard, at the moment when this bus went over the cliff, the driver was not only speeding insanely but also attempting to pass another vehicle at the same time.

Anonymous said...

Is there anyway accidents like this can be prevented.

One good way is to drive slower and more carefully on such dangerous roads (and on all roads).


mother in israel said...

On the radio last night they said that the driver was angry at another driver and decided to teach him a lesson by passing him. They also said that all tour buses have seat belts, which would have prevented most of the deaths (had they been used).
Jpost says road rage.

Baila said...

Okay, when I made that comment I didn't have the whole story. That this happenned because a driver was trying to cut off another on what is such a treacherous road to begin with is insane. I also read in the Jerusalem Post this morning that the driver has had "22 prior traffic convictions. While police officers said that was not unusual for someone who has been on the road for 20 years....."

What???? (That is a direct from the front page of the paper).

Please tell this can't be true, that 20-year drivers normally have 22 prior traffic convictions!

How many traffic convictions do you guys have? In twenty years???

What a waste.

mother in israel said...

22 convictions--how many violations weren't caught--how many times did h get off?

Commenter Abbi said...

Not to defend this sorry excuse for a human, but drivers drive for a living- it's not like regular folk who do other things with their time. So i think it makes sense that more time on the road= more violations than the average driver who doesn't drive for a living.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Baila: I have 2 moving violations in 18 years in Israel and 1 in the US (from Honesdale, PA)

Violations in Israel:

-Speeding to get my brother to a final exam.

-Running a stop sign to get away from suspected terrorists (the cops didnt believe me, but the following day, there was a pigua at that location.)

Oh yes, a rock smashed the edge of my windshield, and then a cop gave me a ticket 15 minutes later for driving with a cracked windshield.

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