Archaeologist Yuval Peleg was killed on June 26, 2014, in an excavation accident between Homesh and Karnei Shomron in the West Bank. The tragic incident occurred when the cave he was investigating collapsed. An emergency medical team was rushed to the scene but was unable to revive Peleg.
A new road was being built in the region and during that process the cave in question was discovered. Following Israeli policy, an archaeological investigation was required before construction could continue. As Deputy Staff Officer for Archaeology in the IDF Civil Administration, Peleg was called in to investigate the cave for archaeological significance.
Peleg spent ten years excavating at Qumran, the site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Though the most popular theory is that Qumran contained a community of Essenes closely connected to the scrolls, Peleg, along with Dr. Yitzak Magen, argued that Qumran was in fact a pottery production plant and the site is only coincidentally associated with the scrolls. Their theories can be found in The Site of the Dead Sea Scrolls: Archaeological Interpretations and Debates (Leiden: Brill, 2006).
Peleg is mourned by his wife and two small children.