Bat Yam bus bombing
Bat Yam bus bombingFlash 90

Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino awarded a certificate of honor to two police officers, whose actions saved many lives in the Bat Yam bus bombing on December 22. The award was decided on following an investigation of the incident.

The incident occurred on a Dan Bus Company 240 line bus on its way from Bnei Brak to Bat Yam. As the bus arrived in Bat Yam, a passenger notified the driver to the presence of an unattended bag with wires protruding from it, at which the bus was evacuated.

Police arrived at the bus only 4 minutes after the suspicious bag was noticed, helping to distance civilians from the site. A police bomb squad officer was wounded in the blast, but otherwise casualties were avoided.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad have both praised the attack, which came during a terror wave, but have not claimed responsibility for it.

The police note that without the resourcefulness of officers Sergeant Major Ayelet Gugman and Lance Corporal Ido Levi, the incident may have ended with much more tragic results.

Danino, in awarding the certificate to the two, stated "by doing the right thing you saved civilian lives. ...Congratulations and well done."

The certificate of honor reads "with quick, professional actions, on your part and the part of your partner, which were characterized by courage and the protection of human life, you prevented an attack on the lives and security of residents and citizens. This is a good example of the values of the Israeli police in its obligations to residents of the state."

Following the Bat Yam attack, the US Consulate General in Jerusalem released a notice to all Consulate and Embassy employees with US citizenship, prohibiting them from using sherut or shuttle taxi services, in addition to the standing ban on using public buses.