(AP) — A crane loading chlorine tanks onto a ship on Monday dropped one of them, causing an explosion that produced a cloud of toxic yellow gas. Along with at least 13 dead, some 250 were sickened, authorities said.
Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh visited the site Tuesday and, citing civil defense and environmental authorities, said the gas concentration in the area had returned to normal.
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He said that most movement at the port has resumed, except for the exact site of the incident which was being cleaned and inspected.
Al-Khasawneh said, “other nationalities” were among the dead, without elaborating. He said many of those in hospitals were being discharged.
Video carried on state TV showed the moment the tank exploded, sending dockworkers scrambling to escape the toxic cloud.
The Public Security Directorate, which initially described it as a gas leak, said authorities sealed off the area after evacuating the injured and sent specialists in to address the situation.
Aqaba is on the northern tip of the Red Sea, next to the Israeli city of Eilat, which is just across the border.
Both are popular beach and diving destinations.
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Eilat’s emergency services said in a statement that there was no impact on the city but that they were monitoring the situation closely.