A stampede of pilgrims taking part in hajj has killed at least 717, according to the BBC, while the Directorate of the Saudi Civil Defense  has reported that at least 719 people were injured.

"Wounded toll rises to 719 and death toll to 453 until now"

The stampede took place in Mina, on the outskirts of Mecca. A Civil Defense spokesman told Al Jazeera that the injured had been transported to four different hospitals in the Mina region.

Pilgrims carry out the "stoning of the devil" ritual in Mina by throwing stones at three stone walls. Some 160,000 tents for pilgrims are also located in Mina. However, according to Al Jazeera's correspondent, the stampede did not take place in the area where the stoning ritual takes place.

"The street where it happened is named Street 204. This stampede did not happen at the site of the 'stoning of the devil' ritual, which was happening today. During and after the stampede the pilgrims continued to flock into Mina to perform the devil stoning ritual," Al Jazeera's Basma Atassi reported from Mina.

Around 4,000 rescue workers and 220 ambulances were sent to assist with the tragedy a civil defense spokesman said. The civil defense directorate has been publishing updates on the number of dead and injured regularly to Twitter since the news broke. Pictures have also been shared showing rescue workers aiding the victims.

According to the BBC, Civil Defense has not yet said  what caused the stampede.

The disaster comes on the heels of a tragic construction crane crashed that took place on Sept. 11, killing more than 100 pilgrims and injuring more than 200 others.

Hajj has seen tragedies similar to this one in the past. In 2006, more than 360 pilgrims were killed in a stampede in Mina. The day previous to that stampede, a hostel in Mecca collapsed and killed 73 people.

In 2004, a stampede in Mina killed 244 people and injured hundreds of others. Thirty-five people also died in a 2001 stampede. However, the worst tragedy to ever occur during Hajj took place in 1990 when 1,426 pilgrims died in a crowded tunnel leading to Mecca holy sites.