Eshkol residents attempt routine in shadow of rockets

Discover the World festival canceled, regional council says school will begin as usual September 1.

August 25, 2011 04:24
2 minute read.
A policeman stands in the crater from a Grad rock

A policeman stands in the crater from a Grad rocket 311. (photo credit: Be'er Tuvia Regional Council)


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After one of two rockets fired at a community in the Eshkol Regional Council struck there and caused minor damage to homes, the region’s council is trying to maintain as “routine a continuation of life as possible,” a spokeswoman told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday.

While not all events in the region are being canceled, the Discover the World festival that was supposed to take place throughout August was postponed, according to the spokeswoman, Ronit Minaker.

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Meanwhile, the council is constantly in contact with residents through its website, e-mails and phone text messages.

“We are ready to give responses to residents and there is a 24-hour open center that they are able to turn to,” Minaker said. “The main message is that following Home Front authority instructions saves lives. Fortunately, residents here are accustomed to and know how to act during an incident of alarm and therefore the number of injuries in the region is very low compared to the number of missiles that fall.”

Although safe rooms offer protection to some in the area, many communities do not have them, and when Kassams strike, the region is not covered by the Iron Dome defense system, according to Minaker.

“In those communities when there is an alarm, there is nowhere to go,” she said. “Parents rush to their children and lie down on them, because this is the only way to protect them.”

Despite the current attacks, the council plans to begin school on September 1 as scheduled, particularly because all educational institutions are protected and are often safer than homes, Minaker explained.

“We see great importance in maintaining a routine and enabling our children to live normal lives,” she said.

The council has been in touch with the Prime Minister’s Office, the Public Security Ministry, the Defense Ministry and military officials, and is awaiting a government decision to protect all buildings within 7 kilometers of the Gaza Strip from rockets, as well as the approval of the expansion of Road 232, which is filled with 500 trucks daily carting equipment and food to the Gaza Strip and disrupts the lives of residents, Minaker said.

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