The Israel School of Tourism visited the memorial to the victims of the worst natural disaster in Israeli history, the Carmel Forest fire in December 2010, which killed 44 people (included among them a 16-year-old boy, 2 fire fighters and 36 cadets and one commander from the Israel Prison Service, a civilian and 3 police officers) and led to the evacuation of 17,000 people.
The disaster took a heavy toll on Israel’s wildlife – long a source of pride for the country – with some 12,000 acres burned and five million trees turned to ash. Over 250 homes were destroyed or severely damaged. The fire appeared to be caused by human activity near the Druze town of Isfiya.
The monument is sited near the road where fire trapped and burned a bus carrying cadets from the Israel Prison Service sent to evacuate prisoners from the path of the blaze on Dec. 2, 2010. The names of the victims were inscribed on a cement wall erected near the monument near Kibbutz Beit Oren on Mount Carmel, Haifa.
The monument has become a pilgrimage site for Israeli’s of all ages as well as tourist from abroad. The site includes all the requirements for success: It is on a mountain, has a view of the sea, is green and is near Tel Aviv.