After an all-night search, the young man missing since yesterday in the Ogg River in the Judean Desert, was found safe and sound by search and rescue forces.
The Megillot rescue unit carried out the all night search, together with the Police of the Shai District, fire fighters, a search dogs unit, a police helicopter, a helicopter that fired flares and volunteers.
It was feared that the young man may have fallen and gotten injured or dehydrated.
The incident began yesterday when five young people from Jerusalem, who went for a walk in the Og River, experienced dehydration. The hikers called the rescue forces who found all but one young man. As darkness fell, police forces and the rescue units began to comb the stream by foot and with off the road vehicles. Efforts were focused on the area where they lost contact with the young man
At a midnight assessment, the search teams decided to continue searching. This morning; volunteers from the Arad, Ein Gedi, Etzion and Samaria rescue units joined the search including dozens of rescuers, fire fighters and policemen. At around 8:00 this morning the missing young man was found alive and well, and those searching for him began singing and dancing.
The young man told rescuers that he saw the helicopter searching for him and waved at it- but the helicopter did not see him. Later in the night he fell asleep, and immediately in the morning he began to march towards the base of Nabi Musa and shouted for help. Not getting any response, he sat on the side and waited. A passing police car found him safe and sound.
The young man, healthy and sound, but suffering from exhaustion, thanked the Creator and those seeking him: “First of all, I thank the Master of the Universe, Who sent me and somehow I reached the base,” he said. Then he thanked the rescue teams: “Thank you very much, you were with me all night, I felt it, flares, helicopters; I saw it all and said “they’re looking for me so I shouldn’t give up. I went through a hard night, 18 hours without water, I heard you looking for me, you were amazing; thank you very much, Thank you to the Creator.”
Noam Eldan, commander of the Shai District Megillot Rescue Unit, summed up the incident: “We went out to a seemingly simple event, but realized there was a missing person. We added more teams from the unit, a police helicopter. “We searched the Upper Ogg River, without finding him,” he said, adding that 500 volunteers from a rescue unit joined his men, as well as firefighting teams, the Ma'aleh Adumim police station and rescue dog crews of the sting unit. “Our team that combed the Nebi Moussa road found the missing person who spent the night in the Ogg Stream”. Eldan thanked “the wonderful people from all over the country, volunteers who invested all night and conducted themselves with tremendous professionalism to save lives.”