Carmel blaze death-toll rises to 43

Father of prison guard killed on first day of fire calls on PM to resign; Jalal Bisan, 29, from Kafr Jat, leaves behind a wife and two children.

December 11, 2010 14:47
1 minute read.
Remains of bus burned in Carmel fire

Bus in Carmel fire 311. (photo credit: Channel 10)

One of the prison guards aboard the bus that was engulfed in flames on the first day of the Carmel Forest fire over a week ago died on Saturday at Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center.

Deputy Shift Commander Jalal Bisan, aged 29, from Kafr Jat, leaves behind a wife and two children. He will be buried Sunday at noon in the Kafr Jat cemetery.

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His death brought the toll to 38 of those killed while traveling on the bus that got caught in the fire as it headed to Damun Penitentiary to help with its evacuation.

On Friday, the father of another prison guard killed in the blaze attacked the government for its management of the disaster and called on the prime minister to resign.

Israel Police Cmdr. (res.) Ze’ev Even-Chen, father of Topaz Even-Chen Klein, told Channel 2 that “the State of Israel was revealed in its nakedness. Everyone is talking about a [potential] earthquake or chemical weapons [attack]. I’m here to warn that in the next disaster there will be 40,000 killed, not just 40. Anyone who cares needs to stand up and shout.”

Even-Chen called Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu a coward for not coming to pay his condolences to the families who lost relatives following the bus tragedy.

Topaz Even-Chen Klein was 28 years old and lived in Rehovot.

The guards killed in the massive fire were participating in a new officers’ course that gave specialized training to improve prisoner treatment and turn pupils into directors in the prison system.

The course started on October 17 and was supposed to conclude in March 2011.

The Carmel fire burned down around 35,000 dunams (3,500 hectares), destroyed 74 homes and killed 43 people.

The remaining victims of the fire were three police officers, a firefighter and a 16- year-old volunteer.

Melanie Lidman contributed to this report.

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