Dangers during hametz burning tackled

Last year in Bnei Brak and environs, 70 children were hurt while burning the remaining leaven (hametz) from their homes.

April 5, 2012 04:26
1 minute read.
Haredim burn leaven in Mea Shearim

Haredim buning hametz 311. (photo credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)


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Last year in Bnei Brak and environs, 70 children were hurt while burning the remaining leaven (hametz) from their homes. On Friday morning, when the hametz is burned in a fire before Passover begins that evening, an effort is being made to prevent such accidents there and in other locations around the country.

Beterem, the Israel Association for Child Safety and Health, and the Bnei Brak Municipality have joined together to prevent children from suffering burns. Volunteers from the United Hatzalah rescue organization in the Dan Region have been drafted to keep children far enough away from bonfires to prevent skin burns.

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Among the injured children that United Hatzalah of the Dan Region treated last year was a 10-year-old boy who was hurt when burning cardboard hit his face. A group of kindergarten children were injured when an inflammable spray can was “accidentally” thrown into the bonfire and exploded.

The average hospitalization period for treating skin burns in children and teenagers is 10 days – three times the amount of time for conventional pediatric illness, said Beterem. Hospitalization costs are also much more expensive for treating burns.

When burning the leaven, do so only in safe metal containers provided by the municipality, Beterem said. Do not light fires near trees or under power lines. An adult must always be present to supervise, and he or she must not leave the spot until the fire is fully extinguished.

On Thursday night, when the search for the hametz is conducted at home, only the adult should hold the candle that provides light for the search.

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