Young couple drowns in elevator in Tel Aviv

The young couple was trapped in the underground elevator as over 70 millimeters of rain fell in two hours.

By World Israel News Staff

A young couple, Dean Shoshani and Stav Harari, both 25, were trapped in a flooded elevator on the underground parking level of a building in Tel Aviv on Saturday during heavy rains. They both drowned.

According to Ynet, the families of the victims asked, “How come no one has come over to talk to the family yet? No official, no one from the municipality or the police to tell us what happened. It’s criminal neglect.”

The family holds the city responsible, blaming the poor drainage system, which has been neglected for years, the news site reports.

It may be that a faster response would have saved the couple. As Ynet reports, one of the residents of the building documented his attempts to call for help during the flooding:

“At 12:26, no one responded. Call to the police, the police also don’t answer. Another call to the police, the police again don’t answer. At 12:33 two firefighter calls – also don’t answer. In one call they answered me and turned me to hotline 106. At 106, I got disconnected.”

Then later, the resident succeeded in getting through:

“One of the firefighters answered me and told me to contact hotline 106. I told him that the street was getting flooded and it was becoming life threatening. He referred me to hotline 106 so they could come and pump the water out. I realized there were people in the elevator and only on the third call they answered me.”

Seven fire crews worked on Saturday to rescue the trapped couple, sawing through the roof of the elevator. Divers simultaneously tried to open the doors of the elevator underwater.

The couple was rushed to different hospitals and efforts were made to resuscitate them, but to no avail.

More than 70 millimeters of rain fell on Tel Aviv in two hours on Saturday.