Illustration by Denis Shifrin

Devastating blaze raises safety drill question for Israel high risers

Are Fire drills carried out for people who live in high-rise multi-storey buildings in Israel?

I pose the question following  the devastating fire in June which quickly swept through the 27-storey Grenfell Tower residential building in London’s Kensington, leaving many dead.

One person interviewed said that in approximately two-and-a-half years since restoration of the building – and to the best of his knowledge – there had been no fire drills at all.

I understand that in this country at present, there are many 40-storey buildings and some 60-storey residential building projects are on their way.


Who sorts out all the Thursday waste?

What percentage of waste in Israel gets recycled? That was the question posed recently in Yediot Achronot. Unfortunately, my answer – 23% – was correct.

A while ago I called the 106 service of Herzliya to ask how to dispose of two large office chairs. I was told that the official collecting day for household items – including furniture, and waste garden greenery – was Thursdays.

When I asked if both furniture and garden waste were disposed of together, I was told that everything is recycled.

So I’m left wondering how and who sorts out the kitchen and bathroom items, washing machines and refrigerators from the garden waste?


I’ve been freezing lately

Most cooked and fried foods can be frozen in plastic containers, cling wrap, plastic-bags and aluminum foil. Some need to be packed airtight. Others, like liquids, need a centimeter or two of air space.

I froze peeled and unpeeled carrots, both whole and sliced, and found they are good after cooking, but peeled onions became soft and watery when unfrozen but were still OK for cooking or frying.

If you have any suggestions, please share them with us. The address is at the foot of the page.


Cheered by library where you can pick up a Penguin or two

AFTER attending an ESRA lecture at the Beit Ariela Tel Aviv Library in Shaul Hamelech St, I went upstairs to the library itself and was pleasantly surprised.

The atmosphere was quiet, there were comfortable armchairs and couches, soft carpet and the combination of both electric and natural light. A number of people were sitting reading books and newspapers.

As well as Hebrew, the library has books in English, French and Russian, and are always interested in receiving more as there about 20 libraries in the Tel Aviv area.

I was pleased to see in the English section that they have Penguin Books with the soft front and back covers reinforced.

There are also some of the old classics, which are often difficult to find nowadays.

Library members can borrow four books at a time for a month, plus two music discs (CD ROMS). Tel Aviv residents can use the library for free. Non-residents are charged NIS 360 a year. To donate books, call 03 6910 141, ext 230, Room 17.


Less sugar, less fat leaves me cheesed off

When a new product comes on to the market with either less sugar or less fat content than one that’s similar, why does it have to cost so much more – or sometimes even double – that of the original product?

Shufersal has come up with a new yellow cheese under their own name. It contains 9 per cent fat and costs NIS 5 per 100 grams. They have similar cheese with 28 per cent fat, yet this costs just NIS 2.90 per 100 grams.

Presumably they hope to sell more of the new product – so why almost double the price?


When it pays to read the small print

Have you noticed a recent change in the way that some big supermarkets have been offering their items for sale? 

We are now bombarded with goods at what might appear to be fantastically cheap, until one sees in very small print towards the bottom of the ad the phrase “depending on a purchase of more than NIS 150, 100 or 50.”

Also be careful to check the dates to which these “bargains” refer.


Before calling a company over a complaint, or to obtain information, I recommend that you have paper and a pen handy before ringing.

The automatic answering machines and the young telephone operators today give the maximum information required at top speed – and unfortunately only once.

 

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About the author

Naomi Ariel

Born in U.K. "within the sound of Bow Bells", Naomi Ariel was brought up in Essex. She first visited Israel for a few years in the mid 50's and lived and worked in Moshav Kfar Mordechai. She return...
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