One woman has been killed after dozens of rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel, the Israeli emergency services has said.
Two others have been injured, one critically, according to Israel’s Magen David Adom rescue agency.
Palestinian militant Islamist group Hamas has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Footage from Reuters news agency shows Israeli firefighters fighting flames in the city of Ashkelon, as thick plumes of smoke rose from charred out vehicles.
The office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said security chiefs are due to meet as a result of the rocket strikes.
An initial report from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), said that a “number of terrorists” had infiltrated into Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip and that residents in surrounding areas have been asked to stay in their homes.