Three dockworkers died after inhaling toxic gases while unloading coal from a carrier at the port of Antwerp on Saturday.
The three workers had entered the hold of the Hong Kong-flagged Saga Frontier, owned by Saga Carrier, to clear away coal residue when the accident occurred.
A spokesperson for the East Flanders administration said that autopsies had revealed the three had died from inhaling toxic gases, adding that a toxicology report would identify what kind of gases they were.
Expressing the condolences of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), president Paddy Crumlin said, “We can never relax on port safety and accident prevention.
“Antwerp is a port where health and safety is taken very seriously and, like the three men’s trade unions, we are confident that a full investigation will take place into what happened and how any resulting lessons can be implemented.”