The Orient Queen cruise ship which was berthed at Port Beirut (Lebanon) has sunk following two very large explosions in the cargo port on August 4. According to reports, 2 people onboard the cruise ship have died and 7 others are seriously injured. The Philippines’ Department of Foreign Affairs announced the two deceased (crew) were from The Philippines.
The cruise vessel is Bahamas-flagged (registered in Nassau) and operated by Abou Merhi Cruises. The Orient Queen had returned to homeport from a 22-day voyage. The 1989-built liner had max passenger capacity 330 plus 153 crew.
The BNS Bijoy navy ship, a cargo ship, and a livestock carrier have also been damaged by the explosions. In total, the explosions have killed 135+ people and injured 5,000+ people, as of August 6. The number of casualties is expected to increase.
According to Lebanese officials, the explosions were caused by 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate that had been stored in a warehouse for 6 years. Lebanese authorities placed the port officials who oversaw the storage and security of the port under house arrest. The investigation is pending.
For more Orient Queen accidents and incidents see at the ship's CruiseMinus page.