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IAF official: ‘We made a mistake when we didn’t evacuate these Air Force bases’

A senior Israeli Air Force official responded Monday to the reports that the Israeli Air Force (IAF) sustained hundreds of millions of shekels in damage to planes due to flooding.

According to the source, before two underground storehouses at Hatzor Airbase flooded last week, the IAF decided to prepare for the storm by removing planes and equipment from various bases. In addition, the IAF evacuated underground storehouses around the country in preparation for the storm.

The source also said that due to the unusual flooding, within a short time a total 50,000 cubic meters of water had flooded the entire area and especially the base, harming eight fighter planes and two underground storehouses.

“At the end of the day, the damage is reversible and minor, and it is mostly technical work to return eight fighter planes – five of which were lightly damaged and three of which were a bit more seriously damaged – and in any case they will all be usable within a week,” an IAF source said. “Already this morning, the squadron base is back in action and planes have taken off from there.”

He also said that the one responsible for ongoing management within the bases is the IAF, and outside the bases, the local authorities are responsible.