Firefighters were called to a yeshiva in Jerusalem at 1am on Saturday morning after a fire broke out and engulfed the entire building.
After firefighters gained control of the flames, they aired the building out and began investigating the cause.
Initial investigations show fabric was left on an ad-hoc Shabbat (Sabbath) hot plate (blech). The hot plate, which sat directly on the flames, did not meet industry standards and was not safe to use. This caused the fabrics to catch fire and ignite the rest of the building.
Israel Firefighters said, "This type of heating is absolutely forbidden, both for electric hot plates (plata) and for those which sit directly on the flames (blech). For a 'blech,' the danger is sevenfold. This is a dangerous type of hot plate and the risk of a fatal fire breaking out is extremely high."
The Jerusalem District Firefighters and Investigation Unit said, "Unfortunately, the vast majority of fires involving damage to property and injuries to people involve the use of an unapproved and unsafe Shabbat hot plate. Approved Shabbat hot plates are also sometimes at fault, when they are covered in an unsafe fashion."