Turkey s Iskenderun port on fire after quake
February 8, 2023 01:23 AM
Dozens of cargo containers were on fire for the second day running on Tuesday in Turkey's quake-hit southern port city of Iskenderun, local TV images showed.
The blaze at the Iskenderun international port has raged since 5:00 pm (1400 GMT) Monday when one of its containers toppled over from aftershocks following the deadly 7.8-magnitude quake, Hurriyet daily reported.
Images broadcast by the NTV news channel showed thick black plumes of smoke billowing from the containers. Another video showed unsuccessful attempts to put the fire out on Monday night.
In one image, the column of smoke resembles a raging tornado while in another, hundreds of brightly coloured containers have fallen over. Turkish authorities have sent a coast guard ship to help put out the fire at the port in Hatay province.
Sealand, a division of the Maersk container shipping company, said in a statement on Tuesday there had been "significant damage to logistics and transport infrastructure around the Pazarcik, Kahramanmaras, epicentre, including at the Port of Iskenderun".
It added that all its operations would cease at the port until further notice because of the "severe structural damage". The company said it would divert cargo to other ports, including the nearby Mersin port.
Hatay, on the Syrian border, is one of the most severely affected Turkish provinces. Earlier on Tuesday, Vice President Fuat Oktay said 872 people had died in Hatay. The overall death toll now stands at 3,549 people in Turkey and 1,602 in Syria.