Ambulances Busy, Streets Quiet During Yom Kippur in Israel

Magen David Adom ambulances were stoned as they raced through the streets of some Israeli cities and towns on medical emergencies Monday.

The culprits were not ultra-Orthodox Jews outraged by violations of Yom Kippur strictures, but indolent youths bored by the quiet of the day, the authorities said.

Magen David Adom, which operates ambulance and first-aid services in Israel, reported answering 2,269 emergency calls during the 24-hour fast that began at sundown Sunday.

A spokesman said MDA paramedics rushed 749 people from their homes to hospitals for emergency from their homes to hospitals for emergency treatment during the day, including heart attack victims. Mobile intensive-care units handled another 99 cases.

In addition, MDA ambulances transported 83 pregnant women in labor to hospitals. First aid was rendered to 121 young children who fell off bicycles or skateboards. One youth, 17-year-old Ilan Najjar of Netanya, died of a fractured skull suffered when he fell off his bicycle.

More than 100 fasting worshipers were treated at synagogues for hunger or heat fatigue.

Apart from the ambulances, the only vehicles on the streets were those operated by the military, police or firefighters, as well as cars transporting workers to operate public utilities.

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