One Jordanian passenger died after a fire broke out aboard a ferry en route to Egypt Thursday, while the remaining 1,249 passengers and crew members were rescued.
The flames broke out in the ferry's cargo section during the voyage to the Egyptian port of Nuweiba. The ship was about 10 miles from the Jordanian port of Aqaba when the fire started.
A Jordanian rescue ship was able to safely transfer the majority of passengers to life rafts. Military aircraft and ships were also involved in the rescue effort.
An unidentified Jordanian passenger died after suffering fatal injuries caused from jumping into the water, Jordanian Civil Defense spokesman, Farid al-Sharaa, told The Associated Press.
The body of the man has been recovered, and Jordanian officials believe that the passenger drowned.
The fire caused extensive damage to the ferry. It later sunk into the Red Sea.
12 passengers were taken to a Jordanian hospital after suffering minor injuries from smoke inhalation. The other passengers and crew, who were mostly Egyptians, have since boarded another ferry to Nuweiba.
The passengers aboard the ferry, named Pella, were mostly Egyptian expatriates returning to Egypt for the Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday, which begins Sunday.
The ferry is owned by Arab Bridge Maritime Company, a joint venture between Jordan and Egypt.
There have been several cases of accidents aboard Egyptian ferries. In 2006, more than 1,000 passengers died in a similar instance when a fire broke out aboard a ferry carrying Egyptian workers returning from Saudi Arabia.