Beirut Explosion

August 2020

On the evening of August 4th 2020,  a powerful explosion had sent a huge orange fireball into the sky, followed by a massive shock wave that overturned cars, damaged buildings and shook the ground across the Lebanese capital.

Officials estimate the explosion caused up to $15 billion (£11.5bn) of damage. It left at least 158 people dead, 6,000 injured and 300,000 homeless.

It emerged that the ammonium nitrate had been left at the port warehouse for six years despite repeated warnings it was dangerous.

The blast destroyed the immediate dockside area, creating a crater approximately 140m (460ft) wide, which flooded with seawater.

The tragedy is one of the largest industrial accidents involving the explosive chemical, and it hit Lebanon amid the coronavirus pandemic and an economic crisis.