A monstrous explosion rocked the port area of Lebanon’s capital Tuesday, killing many of the cities inhabitants and injured thousands more. According to the Prime Minister, the event was the detonation of a significant amount of ammonium nitrate stored in a warehouse near the port.
What We Know:
- The unfortunate explosion in the Lebanese capital of Beirut on Tuesday happened around 6:00 p.m local time after a major fire erupted near the warehouse with the highly explosive chemical was being stored. As of Tuesday evening, there have been reports of at least 78 dead and over 4,000 injured.
- The explosion initially had conflicting reports on what exactly triggered the detonation, but the earliest reports targeted a fire in a warehouse that stored fireworks in the blast zone.
— Fady Roumieh (@FadyRoumieh) August 4, 2020
- Since the disaster, early Tuesday, many posts have flooded social media giving various angles of the blast and damage to the surrounding city.
- Lebanon’s Prime Minister Hassan Diab said in a statement that an estimated 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate had been stored at a warehouse for the past six years. Lebanon’s general security chief said the substance had been confiscated years ago.
I honestly can’t even wrap my head around this:
the Oklahoma City bombers used approximately 2 Tons and destroyed 1 building, shattered another 286
— Ayman Mohyeldin (@AymanM) August 4, 2020
- Ammonium nitrate is a chemical compound which is usually available for commercial use and is often found in explosives and fertilizers. Diab vows that’s he will “not rest until we find the person responsible for what happened, to hold him accountable and impose the most severe penalties.”
- The Prime Minister later announced that starting Wednesday, and there will be three days of national mourning for everyone affected by this tragic event. Beirut has been declared a disaster city, and the government stated it will be under a state of emergency for two weeks.
As of Tuesday evening, Wednesday morning for Lebanon, the damage the city suffered can be described as catastrophic. The explosion tore through the city with brute force and caused countless damage near and around Beirut’s quarters. The shockwave from the explosion caught on many recordings, damaged infrastructure as far as 10 kilometers (6 miles) away from the origin of the blast site.