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The burning July heat claimed yet another victim Thursday as a 20-year-old yeshiva student from Jerusalem died of dehydration while hiking in Nahal Tze'elim in the Negev desert. Four other fellow-hikers needed medical attention after almost dehydrating as well.
The young man's friends, from the same yeshiva, told rescuers that their friend had run off ahead and they eventually lost sight of him.
The IDF search-and-rescue unit 669, along with the civilian Ein Gedi search and rescue unit, were summoned to the area and eventually succeeded in locating the young man, who had already passed away.
Following the tragedy, rescue workers said that hiking on such a hot day with the amount of water the group had taken with them "clearly posed a danger."
A Zaka team, which included Zaka Chairman Yehuda Meshi Zahav, also arrived at the scene to aid in the rescue efforts. Meshi Zahav said, "This is a tragedy in the haredi community - a 20-year-old yeshiva student died because of an egregious lack of awareness regarding safety rules on the hike path."
Meshi zahav went on to call on rabbis and other public officials to sound the bell regarding the dangers involved with such activities.