Thousands of gallons of oil spilled in nature reserves in ecological-sensitive Arava region near Eilat Wednesday night, causing a major ecological disaster.
Highway 90 north of Eilat has been closed to traffic, which has been re-routed to Route 10, to the west. A tractor hit the three-foot diameter Eilat-Ashkelon pipeline at the pumping station during routine maintenance work.
Oil spilled for more than an hour until the flows stopped and flowed for miles in a dry river bed and on the highway. The flow was stopped near the Jordanian border.
The spill will severely damage the existence of animal life and vegetation, and the absorption of the oil in the ground will cause irreversible damage to the Arava.