As Jews across Israel celebrated the Jewish New Year of Rosh Hashana earlier this week, parts of the country were hit with extreme flash flooding and, in some areas, hail, in an unusual change of weather.
“It felt like the apocalypse, the rain has been torrential, there were about 10 lightning strikes in seconds, and even with your windshield wipers on high, it was impossible to see anything,” Mark Katz, a National Parks Authority employee, told the Times of Israel.
Since the beginning of September, Israel has experienced a series of extreme weather changes, beginning last week with a sudden sandstorm that blanketed the country in thick yellow dust.
The record setting five-day dust storm was also accompanied by a heat-wave, with new records reached across Israel in temperatures and air pollution.
Last week’s sandstorm is reported to be the worst to hit the region in Israel’s history. As the dust finally dissipated, it was only to be replaced with freak rainstorms and flash flooding in the Arava and Judean deserts.
WATCH: Flooding in Mitze Rimon
שימו לב לנחל נקרות בדרום, באזור מצפה רמון. קצר אך מרהיב. תודה אגף התנועה. pic.twitter.com/TCUmOrPneZ
— בני כבודי (@benikvodi) September 15, 2015
Israel’s meteorological service issued flash flood warnings Tuesday, even going so far as to close the Eilat Airport, grounding domestic flights until the late evening.
The flash floods led to road closures in from the central region of Mitzpe Rimon all the way just north of Eilat. The extreme change in weather also caused parts of southern Israel and the Galilee to be hit by a rare hail storm. Witnesses reported hail the size of ice cubes.