Fire Chief Threatens To Shut Down Israel’s Largest Bus Company
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Israel’s Fire Chief Shachar Ayalon is threatening to shut down Israel’s largest bus company, Egged, unless Egged installs a fire detection and prevention system on each of its 3,000 buses, Yeshiva World reported.
Egged provides public bus service in Jerusalem and service between various cities and towns throughout the country.
In the 14 months since January 1, 2012, 125 buses from a number of bus companies have burned. Just last week an Egged bus on Highway 1 reportedly burned due to a motor malfunction. Earlier this week, a non-Egged bus burned in Beersheva and on Monday an Egged bus burned in Beit Shemesh.
Ayalon warned Egged that there are elderly and disabled passengers on its buses who may not be capable of evacuating quickly enough.
“If we wait until after the disaster, they will all question ‘where were the fire experts,’ so I am announcing that if Egged does not install fire detectors and fire extinguishers on its buses, I will shut the company down,” he said.
The chief’s office had already privately asked Egged to install a fire detection and prevention system on each of its buses, but Egged failed to reply and failed to install the system on even one bus. In contrast, most city bus companies in the US have fire extinguishers and emergency equipment on board each bus they operate.
Ayalon said he is giving Egged thirty days to comply. If Egged fails to do so, Ayalon said he will begin the process needed to shut Egged down.
The system Ayaon wants installed reportedly can cost as much as 10,000 NIS ($2683) per bus.
Egged claimed that was “studying” Chief Ayalon’s request.