Aqaba pollution incident referred to public prosecutor

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AMMAN — The Tourism and Environment Commissioner at Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) Nidal Al-Majali has referred the oil leakage file of last week to Aqaba’s public prosecutor to proceed with legal action, according to Jo24.

Legal proceedings regard environmental accidents in territorial waters; in this case, the leakage caused damage to a number of container port docks, to the passenger port and to a number of southern Aqaba beaches located within the limits of the marine reserve.

Majali said that the case involves a vessel; the file contains all details, including documents and reports issued after an environmental damage assessment studying seawater and coral life. It is now in the hands of the prosecutor’s office at the Aqaba Court House.

He added that about 11 tonnes of heavy fuel were leaked. According to preliminary data, there was a hole in the ship’s fuel tank.

He said that authorities responded swiftly as soon the accident was reported, on the morning of August 14, by Prince Hamzah Center for Pollution Control and the Environmental Damage Assessment Team in the Aqaba Region Authority, in partnership with the Maritime Authority, to prevent the spread of the leakage. It spread as a result of the winds and waves that lasted for three consecutive days.

Majali said that work is apace to remove all effects of the pollution, in the cooperation with beach operators.

Director of the Marine Science Station Ali Al-Sawalmeh said that all the samples taken to assess the impact of the pollution on sea water and marine life were studied by specialists at the station; it showed that currently there is no trace of oil in the water.

Laboratory results on coral also showed that marine life was able to adapt during the stressful period of the first days of the accident, according to data from the Coral Monitoring Station. اضافة اعلان



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