The Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority scuttled a Lockheed TriStar in the waters of the Red Sea, next to the King Abdullah Reef dive site, and adjacent to Aqaba Container Terminal.
The L-1011 TriStar plane that was sent – initially very slowly, and then rather rapidly in the final moments – to the bottom was a non-Jordanian commercial that had been out of service and parked at King Hussein International Airport for several years. ASEZA recently purchased the aircraft to sink it, when it would join its military aircraft companion, the Hercules C-130, which was sunk in November last year, and the collection of military vehicles – tanks, anti-aircraft guns, armoured cars, field guns and helicopter gunships – which were sent to the bottom just a few weeks ago. The C-130 has already become a popular hotspot for diving enthusiasts and is home to schools of fish, corals and other marine organisms, while the military vehicles will be off-limits for at least six months to allow marine life to colonise them before divers are allowed to visit.
The site was completely free of coral reefs, with relatively wide and flat sandy areas, and some presence of seagrass meadows. The presence of the aircraft will allow the creation of artificial coral reefs, habitat for fish and other marine organisms, and thus an attraction for divers in that area that did not previously exist.