Life-saving guidelines: This is how you will build the sukkah safely


In the shadow of the tightening closure and the second corona wave and just before the eve of Sukkot, towards which Sukkot is being set up throughout the country, the Magen David Adom organization is organizing calls that are received every year due to accidents caused by building and dismantling the sukkah.

Last year, a 9-year-old boy was injured by a disc saw while building a sukkah at home in Elad. He was seriously injured in the palm of his hand, and was evacuated by MDA staff to the hospital when his condition was moderate.

This year, too, before Yom Kippur, an MDA team was called in case of an injury in the sukkah – on Thursday last week, a man and a woman in their 90s built a sukkah on the balcony of their home in the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem.

The man (90), who was standing on a ladder, tripped and fell on his wife (89) who was slightly injured in the hand, she was treated on the spot by MDA staff and did not need to be evacuated to the hospital.

In recent years, MDA medics and paramedics have provided medical care to people injured during the construction of a sukkah, including: A 24-year-old man who was moderately injured when he fell from a height during the construction of a sukkah on the fourth floor of his fourth floor in the Beit Vagan neighborhood of Jerusalem. A 45-year-old man who was seriously injured after falling from a height of 3 meters during the installation of a thatch to the sukkah and in Bnei Brak, a 38-year-old man who was electrocuted during the construction of a sukkah, and evacuated by MDA staff to the hospital.

In order to enjoy the holiday tradition in the safest way, MDA calls on the public to take precautions and obey instructions.

In Magen David Adom, the complete guide to building a safe sukkah is presented:

Are you building a sukkah in the backyard? Be sure to wear closed shoes, weed the nearby vegetation in which snakes and other dangerous reptiles may be hiding, and make sure that the access roads to and from the sukkah are free of various obstacles, in a way that will allow quick exit from the sukkah when needed.

Be sure to place the sukkah at a safe distance from electrical installations and gas cylinders. Be careful not to light a fire near the gas cylinders or electrical installations, if any, during the construction of the sukkah.

Are you building a sukkah on a high-rise balcony or on scaffolding? Make sure that no heavy objects fall down, for fear of hitting passers-by. Including this, make sure that the awnings open and the planters are firmly fixed in place, and that there is no danger of the sukkah planks, thatched parts or any other object falling down.

During the construction of the walls of the sukkah, care must be taken to keep children away from the area, so that they will not be hit by any part that may fall on them.

In addition, make sure to strengthen the walls to each other, in such a way that will not allow them to collapse. Particular care should be taken when it comes to wood walls, or any other hard material.

When laying the thatch, care must be taken to stand tall.

Do not climb on the balcony railing, or on an unstable ladder. The thatch must be reinforced to the body of the sukkah so that it will not fly in the wind and injure passers-by.

At the ends of the palms are thorns that can be caught in the fingers and hands of those who build the sukkah.

Keep your palms away from children and make sure they are not pricked. In addition, the palm should be held under it and not between the leaves, for fear of animals of various kinds that may be found there.

When connecting the sukkah to electricity, be careful not to touch exposed electrical wires or unsafe electrical points.

Make sure that before connecting the sukkah to electricity, standard and safe sockets for use in open space, and waterproof, in order to avoid electric shock.

Avoid installing improper power cables in the sukkah, as this may result in a short circuit and fire.

Hanging decorations: Do not stand on railings, unstable ladders, chairs, etc., in order to hang the sukkah decorations. Care must be taken that children do not get hurt or fall from a height during the decoration of the sukkah, and make sure that a responsible adult is nearby and supervises them at all times.

A fall from a height can cause damage to the spine, concussions and in severe cases even death. In any case of falling from a height, MDA should be called on the emergency number 101 or via the “My MDA” widget, through which MDA teams can know where your exact location is. Do not move the victim and do not pick him up.

Candles should be kept lit inside the sukkah unattended, and the location of the candles in the sukkah should be considered at all times, in order to avoid fires in the sukkah.

Avoid throwing cigarette butts in or near the sukkah area to prevent the possibility of a fire.

The four species: Where the markets of the four species will operate, the guidelines of the Ministry of Health, which include keeping a distance and wearing a mask, must be observed.

If you come to an area with children, you must take full care so that they do not break into a nearby road or get lost in the crowd.

In any case of injury, MDA teams should be called quickly on the 101 emergency number or using the “My MDA” widget, and follow the instructions of the paramedics and paramedics at the center, until MDA teams arrive at the scene.

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