Photo Credit: Spokesman for the Firefighting Service Southern District
Car destroyed after running into camel north of Mitzpe Ramon, Jan. 16, 2018

A 13-year-old boy was killed, a 40-year-old woman was seriously wounded, and three others were moderately injured after the car they were in collided with a stray camel owned by local Bedouin on Route 40 north of Mitzpe Ramon.

MDA paramedics and the IDF medical corps pronounced the boy dead at the scene, and evacuated the injured by military plane and intensive care ambulances to Soroka Medical Center in Beer Sheba.

Advertisement

“This is a terrible and painful tragedy, but unfortunately it was bound to happen,” said Amichai Yogev, director of operations for the Regavim movement in the south.

Unattended camel in the desert (archive)

In early 2016, the Regavim movement, through MK Bezalel Samotrich, submitted the Camel Law bill to the Knesset, assigning criminal liability to Bedouin camel owners and compelling them to mark their camels with a subcutaneous chip that would prevent them from evading responsibility for allowing their animals to walk unattended on the Negev desert roads.

The bill also provided additional legal tools to law enforcement agencies in Israel’s notoriously under-regulated “wild south.”

Every year the police receive about 1,000 complaints about camels walking unsupervised on paved roads, often from motorists who barely avoided running into one around a bend. Regavim now calls on MK Eitan Cabel (Zionist Camp), chair of the Knesset Economy Committee which handles the bill to hasten its submission for a plenum vote, to finally stop the life endangerment of innocent Israelis and to punish the careless camel owners.

Advertisement