Ayyyeee… What’s Goodie Everyone. So I got some tea and this involves an explosion that rocked the city of Beirut in Lebanon that killed 70 people and injured a 1000.
Two massive explosions shook Beirut on Tuesday, injuring and killing hundreds of people, causing devastation across multiple neighborhoods and shattering windows for miles around.
The cause of the early evening blasts was not immediately clear, but senior officials said it appeared that flammable materials stored in a warehouse in the port area had caught fire. A smaller explosion had apparently ignited a fire. Then came two secondary blasts, propelling a vast mushroom cloud of pink and yellow smoke over the city.
Hospitals were overwhelmed by the number of injuries. One Hotel said it had received over 500 injured people in the first hours after the blasts. For more than an hour after the explosions, people with blood streaming down their faces or limbs wandered the streets trying to find a way of reaching hospitals on roads too clogged with traffic and debris for ambulances and taxis to move.
The casualty numbers rose through the evening, with more than 70 dead, the Associated Press reported, and more than 3,000 injured, according to the Health Ministry.
These explosions coincide with mounting tensions between Israel and the Lebanese Shiite militia Hezbollah, which also maintains a facility at the port and has long been accused by U.S. officials of using it to smuggle weapons into the country. The incident comes from a spate of mysterious blasts at Shiite militia weapon storage sites in Iraq last year, which Iraqi and Israeli officials have said Israel was responsible for, and more recently a string of explosions at military sites and sensitive locations in Iran, which regional intelligence officials have said Israel, at least in part, was behind.
In a statement offering condolences to families of the dead and injured, Hezbollah did not apportion blame. It called the incident a “huge national tragedy” and urged Lebanese to unite to overcome the ordeal.
Prime Minister Hassan Diab linked the explosions to 2,700 tons of the dangerous chemical that had been stored at the port since 2014, despite warnings from port officials that the material was not safe.
The damage was spread across a wide area. Windows were blown out and check in counters were damaged at Beirut’s airport, several miles from the explosion. Doors were blown open and windows rattled at the U.S. Embassy, more than six miles away.
Health officials warned that the explosion had left a toxic cloud of nitrous oxide hanging over the city, and told residents to wear masks and stay indoors. The U.S. Embassy issued a similar warning in a message to U.S. citizens. “There are reports of toxic gases released in the explosion so all in the area should stay indoors and wear masks if available,” the message said.