Daily Israel Report

Storm Causes Damage, Replenishes Water Supplies

Storms brought rainfall, duststorms to Israel. Damage in center and north. Danger to ancient Caesarea.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 12/12/2010, 8:52 PM / Last Update: 12/12/2010, 9:24 PM

Ilan Hadar

Storms raged in Israel on Sunday, bringing heavy rain to the center and north of the country and clouds of dust to the south. Seawalls broke down in Caesaria and Tel Aviv, leading to concerns for the security of the ancient Caesaria port.

In Be'er Sheva, which was hit by a dust storm blowing up from Egypt, the level of particles in the air was 10 times the limit deemed acceptable for pollutants. In Jerusalem air quality was over the limit by a factor of eight, and in Tel Aviv, by a factor of four.

High winds were reported throughout the country, with wind speed reaching 100 kilometers per hour in some places. The winds pushed storm clouds north.

Several people suffered storm-related injuries, including a man in Netanya who was moderately wounded when a falling tree branch struck his car.

While the storm caused some damage, it also brought much-needed rain. In Haifa a total of 130 millimeters fell, approaching the monthly average of 140mm. Tzfat got 164mm, and Naharia, 143.

Less rain fell in the central coast. In Tel Aviv, only 15mm fell. However, experts said they expect water levels in streams and other reserves to continue to rise overnight.

Snow fell in the Hermon. Weather forecasters said snow will continue to fall Monday as well.

The dust is expected to subside by Monday morning, while stormy weather is expected to continue.