Daily Israel Report

Figures Show Steady Decline in IDF Injuries and Deaths

IDF statistics show continuing trend of more safety, fewer killed in action.
By Tova Dvorin
First Publish: 1/1/2014, 7:05 PM

Injured soldier is evacuated following training accident. Incidents like these are becoming rarer th
Injured soldier is evacuated following training accident. Incidents like these are becoming rarer th
Flash 90

The IDF had a safer 2013, IDF spokespeople said Wednesday. 

Statistics published by the IDF spokesperson's office concluded that there has been a general decline in deaths and injuries in the IDF over the years, and 2013 is no exception. 

Forty people were killed in 2013 in the course of military service. Of those, 5 were killed during operations or terror attacks; 2 were killed in Israeli Air Force operations; 10 were killed in non-IDF-related road accidents; and 23 died of illnesses.

The IDF also noted that there are currently 5 soldiers still missing in action (MIA) since Israel's founding. Of these, three went missing during the Battle of Sultan Yaqoub, during the 1982 Lebanon War: Yehuda Katz, Tzvi Feldman and Zachary Baumel. The other two include Ron Arad, missing since 1986, and Guy Hever, missing since 1997.

In addition, 179 soldiers have been confirmed dead, but have unknown burial sites. The number of these has declined with every war: 98 from the War of Independence, 56 from clashes between 1948-1973, 19 during the Yom Kippur War, and only 6 since then. 

Brigadier General Moshe Allouche, Chief of Staff of the IDF Manpower Division, stated, "the number of suicides in 2013 is the lowest ever recorded in the IDF. Over the past four years there has been a 75% decrease in military personnel committing suicide during their service."

"Now, [the recruitment process] includes a computerized system in which the commander gets preliminary information on each soldier," the General explained,  " "[and] the reduction of weapons available [to privates], and education about suicide within the Army framework, has reduced the suicide rate to its lowest levels - ever."