JERUSALEM (Jun. 21)
Arson accounted for nearly half of the 405 forest fires that have broken out in Israel since March, the Jewish National Fund’s forestry department reported Wednesday.
Up to the middle of June, the blazes destroyed almost 100,000 trees, JNF said.
But while the number of fires was about the same as in the corresponding period last year, the damage was less. The JNF credited the preparedness of its professional and volunteer firefighters.
The land reclamation agency recently purchased 11 fire trucks capable of negotiating difficult terrain. Along with more volunteers, other equipment and special patrols, the trucks have significantly decreased the damage done by the fires.