Two people were pronounced dead following their rescues from a flooded elevator in Tel Aviv following torrential downpours from winter rains on Saturday.
In two separate rescues, a man was pulled from the flooded cab in a residential building at 3:00 p.m. suffering from hypothermia. Identified only as a man in his 30s, he was rushed to Sheba Medical Center, where he was unable to be revived by the medical staff there.
Two hours later, an unconscious female was located and evacuated to Ichilov Hospital, where, she too, was unresponsive to lifesaving measures.
How the elevator got stuck in the basement remains to be determined, but it is believed that it was the result of a short-circuit that kept the two people trapped in the basement. Once the basement filled with rainwater, the elevator cab was inundated with floodwaters.
According to reports, there has been nationwide flooding across Israel and Tel Aviv has been hit particularly hard.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he was shocked at the tragic deaths. “I spoke with the Public Security Minister, the Transportation Minister, the Israel Police Acting Commissioner and the Fire and Rescue Service Commissioner in order to clarify how this happened and how similar disasters might be prevented in the future,” he said.