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Israel rescue teams save 70 U.S. tourists stranded in desert downpour

- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 8, 2014

For dozens of U.S. tourists stranded in an unusually heavy rainfall in the Negev desert, it was Israel to the rescue.

Police said Thursday that Israeli rescue teams riding in helicopters were sent in to save dozens of American travelers who were stranded for the night in a parking lot in the desert area, due to massive rainfall that threatened their safety, The Associated Press reported.

Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said about 70 tourists were at the parking lot on Wednesday when the rainfall began. Overnight, waters rose so high that Israeli rescuers were forced to use both helicopters and Jeeps to help tourists to safety, AP reported.

Thunderstorms and downpours aren't normal weather occurrences at this time of year in Israel, AP reported.

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