Authorities blame haredi community for J'lem fires

Jerusalem Fire Deputy Chief accuses haredim of not taking proper precautions: ‘They like huge bonfires but do not listen.’

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Firefighters battle Jerusalem blaze
Firefighters battle Jerusalem blaze
Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Deputy Chief of Jerusalem’s Romema neighborhood fire station, Rashaf Roni Sonino, accused the haredi community for the numerous fires which broke out across the capital on Thursday.

Dozens of fire crews were able to control the raging blazes.

"These fires are the unequivocal result of Lag B'Omer bonfires and negligence on behalf of the citizens,” stated Sonino an interview with Army Radio. "Since yesterday, we have been battling 2,000 fires - the fire fighters are exhausted.”

Sonino explained how the Fire and Rescue Commission released safety guidelines ahead of the holiday, especially among the haredi sector. "We have been informing the general public and especially the haredi public which have this specific problem, and now evidence shows that the fires broke out near their neighborhoods. They like celebrating by building huge bonfires but they do not listen.”

“The police cannot control them because they do not listen to anyone and they do whatever they want,” he said accusingly. “We spoke to their chief rabbis, the failure is due to their reluctance to obey, they do not even take the proper precautions.”

Photo: Eliran Aharon