Israel’s Fire Commissioner Releases Lag B’Omer Regulations


Israel Fire Commissioner Dedi Simchi on Monday, May 20, 2019, issued an order of the day pertaining to Lag B’Omer and regulations surrounding bonfires. This year, there are serious concerns due to a predicted ‘sharav‘ heat-wave throughout Israel, which will result in extremely hot and dry conditions, which are ideal for the spread of fires.

Order prohibiting the lighting of bonfires
In the letter he writes that conditions that will increase the likelihood of fires compel the decision pertaining to starting bonfires from Wednesday, May 22, 2019 at 8:00AM up to and including May 24, 2019 at 8:00PM throughout Israel with the exception of:

A. In the area south of the geographical line of Highway 25 (Nachal Ohz – Ha’Aravah Junction).

B. In areas that have been prepared to light bonfires and set fire to open areas by local authorities, and were approved by the National Fire & Rescue Authority and subject to the special conditions detailed below, in places where bonfires have been permitted as described above, the lighting will be done subject to the following:

1) A fire located inside a hole in the ground – according to Regulation 3 (1) of the Regulations, but in any case, not in a field, forest and woodland even if a designated area has been allocated for this purpose.

2) A bonfire that is not inside a hole –
a. The distance between a fire and a forest will exceed 500 meters.
b. No fire will be lit in any forest area and woodland, even if a designated area is allocated for this.
c. The distance between a fire, gas and fuel installations will be greater than 60 meters.
d. The distance between a fire and electricity and telephone lines will be greater than 20 meters.
e. The distance between a fire and a building will exceed 60 meters.
f. The distance between a bonfire and another bonfire will exceed 8 meters.
g. Base size bonfire should not exceed 3 meters. The stacking height of the combustion materials used for the bonfire may not exceed 5.1 meters from the ground level.

3) This order is intended to add to the provisions of the regulations, and not to derogate from them, and we are required to ensure that they are filled.

4) Regarding the Meron site, special conditions will be determined by the Northern District Commander.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)