Photo Credit: Courtesy United Hatzalah
The blaze outside Reb Nachman's gravesite

Just after 10 AM local time on Tuesday, a fire broke out in the Talmud Torah building next to the grave of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov in Uman, Ukraine. United Hatzalah volunteers from the Uman chapter rushed to the scene and evacuated the school children. After the children had been brought to safety, the volunteers returned and rescued the Torah scrolls in all of the nearby buildings, as heavy smoke from the blaze was billowing in the direction of the nearby Synagogues and yeshivas.

Torah scrolls being rescued from synagogues outside Reb Nachman’s gravesite

Electrical power to the area was interrupted as a result of the fire, including in the building that houses the Rebbe’s gravesite. The incident ended without injuries, largely due to the quick response of the Hatzalah volunteers,.

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“Last night we graduated another 12 EMT volunteers in Uman, and this morning they already went into action,” said Founder and President of United Hatzalah Eli Be’er.

Lazar Hyman, United Hatzalah Deputy CEO in charge of volunteer activities was present during the graduation ceremony, as were various officials from the city and Jewish community.

“In an effort to improve response times in various Jewish communities in the Ukraine including Uman, we have begun sending course instructors from Israel to the Jewish communities in Ukraine, to lead additional EMT training courses,” Hyman said. “This will greatly improve the life-saving abilities of our teams there throughout the entire year.”

Head of the United Hatzalah team in Uman, Yisroel Starrik, said in a statement: “United Hatzalah’s international dispatch center is working round the clock and always ready to dispatch our volunteer to emergency calls throughout Uman and the surrounding area.”

The Hatzalah emergency number in the Ukraine is 063-800-1221.

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