Beirut explosions: Footage shows moment massive blast sends shockwaves through city

Large blast rips through Beirut port area, near Downtown area of capital 

Claire Lomas
Wednesday 05 August 2020 10:37 BST
Footage shows moment massive blast sends shockwaves through Beirut

Video footage shows the moment massive explosions rocked Downtown Beirut on Tuesday, flattening much of the port, damaging buildings and blowing out windows and doors across the city as a giant mushroom cloud rose above the capital.

Witnesses saw many people injured by flying glass and debris. Miles from the scene of the blast, balconies were knocked down, ceiling collapsed and windows were shattered.

Initially, video taken by residents showed a fire raging at the port, sending up a giant column of smoke, illuminated by flashes of what appear to be fireworks.

The fire then appeared to catch a nearby building, triggering an even larger explosion, sending up a mushroom cloud and a shock wave.

It is believed that the explosion was caused by a fire which detonated 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate that had been stored at the port for six years.

The sudden devastation has overwhelmed Lebanon, a country already struggling with both the coronavirus pandemic and an economic crisis.

With additional reporting from Associated Press

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