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Reports: Boy Admits Touching Off Deadly Wildfire In Israel

The deadly blaze near Haifa, Israel. Getty Images/Getty Images hide caption

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Getty Images/Getty Images

A 14-year-old boy has told investigators in Israel that he's responsible for touching off a deadly wildfire near Haifa that killed at least 41 people last Thursday, The Jerusalem Post and Haaretz.com are reporting.

Most of the victims were student guards who were in a bus headed to a jail where prisoners were to be evacuated because of the blaze.

Haaretz reports that the boy says he had been smoking, using a hookah pipe, in a forest. When he tried to dispose of a still-hot piece of coal, a fire erupted. "The teen said that he was so astounded at what had happened that he ran back to school and didn’t report the incident to anyone," Haaretz adds.

Some other minors may have been involved, the news outlets say. The 14-year-old is now under arrest.