At least 10 dead and 251 injured by the leak of a toxic gas in Jordan

  • While the Jordanian authorities send specialized troops to control the situation, health experts warn that there could be more victims

On the paradisiacal waters of the town of Aqabato the south jordan, a yellow gas has caused chaos. At least ten people have died and 251 have been injured in a toxic gas leak from a storage tank in the port on the shores of the Red Sea. Images on state television have shown a large cylinder hurtling from a crane onto a moored ship and crashing onto its deck. His fall has provoked a violent explosion of yellow toxic gasfrom which the workers around the boat have fled in terror.

“We advise the citizens of Aqaba to stay in your houses and close the windows; this gas is critical & rdquor ;, he said Jamal Obeidat, the head of the Aqaba Health Department, on state television. While the authorities deploy troops to carry out emergency work, Obeidat has stated that there could be more deaths leak related. Specialized teams continue to deal with the incident, as announced by the Civil Defense on its Facebook page. Evacuation planes have also been dispatched to the port city that borders Israel and Saudi Arabia.

One of the worst accidents in the country

The National Center for Security and Crisis Management (NCSCM) has announced that hospitals of Aqaba have been upgraded with sufficient personnel to improve the response to the emergency. The Petra news agency has stressed that medical oxygen is available in hospitals in the city, whose shore faces Egypt. In turn, the Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh He has gone to Aqaba and has formed an investigation team on the incident chaired by the Minister of the Interior, Mazen al Faraya.

The first statements of Deputy Head of the Port Authority from the Aqaba region, Haj Hassan, to the local station Al-Mamlaka are that a “cable carrying a container containing a toxic substance broke, causing the poisonous substance to fall and escape.” This is one of the worst accidents in Jordan in recent years. A flash flood near the dead sea in 2018 it killed 21 people. Most of the victims were students on a school bus. In this case, the Jordanian port of Aqaba is the the only maritime terminal in the country and a key transit point for a large part of its imports and exports.

Israeli offer

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For his part, the neighbor Israel has extended its hand to the kingdom of Jordan. “Israel’s defense establishment is ready to help by any means necessary, and we have conveyed this to our Jordanian friends & rdquor ;, the Israeli Defense Minister announced, Benny Gantz. The area where the explosion occurred in the Bay of Aqaba is 20 kilometers from Eilat, in southern Israel, where 50,000 people live. Aqaba, on the other hand, has 188,000 inhabitants and is a tourist port with new direct flights to Europe that seek to amend the economic crisis in which the country is plunged.

Both cities are connected by a land border crossing. The Jordanian authorities have stated that the cylinder that caused the tragedy contained 25 tons of chlorine intended for export, so greater consequences are expected. Meanwhile, the country watches sadly as a yellow gas covers its sea.

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