Hundreds dead, more than four thousand people injured as the capital city of Lebanon-Beirut faces a deadly explosion

August 07, 2020 newsy 0 Comments

Beirut, which is the capital and the largest city of Lebanon, and also considered to be one of the oldest cities in the world, has recently suffered a massive destruction, which led to a death of at least one hundred people and injured over four thousand. A huge tremor causing explosion which were initially misconstrued by some to be the result of detonation of some nuclear device, is now explained by the Lebanon Government to be the result of over 2700 tonnes of ammonium nitrate which were stored for over six years in a warehouse in the port, preceded by fire which can possibly be originated from firecrackers. It is reported that the explosion took place nearly around 6pm at the Port of Beirut, on the city's Northern Mediterranean coast. Social Media has played an active role in spreading the videos of the blast all over the world, which initially show strong engulfing fire, followed by a massive explosion. The explosion was so strong that it was felt around 240 km away in Cyprus. Glasses of windows were shattered at Beirut International Airport's Passenger terminal, about five miles away from the port; hence covering a huge area in diameter. The blast has reported to destroy the immediate dockside area, creating a crater of approx. 140 metres wide, which flooded with sea water.  

Suspicions and Evidences regarding the blast

Suspicions regarding the blast are yet to be tested and justified. Although, within a few hours of the explosions, the government officials claim the incident to be an accidental ignition of over 2750 tonnes of Ammonium Nitrate; Lebanon Prime Minister, Hassan Diab states that the details of the storage will be announced soon and the responsible hands will not be spared. US President Donald Trump on the other hand as reported by the US media, in his briefings, claims the incident to be an attack; which has been denied by the US officials. The Health system of the country has been under a serious threat of financial crisis and blast casualties as most of the medical facilities have been hit due to the attack. 

The reason behind the occurrence of the explosion

The lack of maintenance of Safety norms at the explosive storage is observed by the experts to be the Primary cause of the explosion. There are serious questions regarding the ignition or the presence of a fire source-which led the explosion to occur. There are evidences that the fire may have occurred due to the fire crackers, which were lying close to one another in this case. Also, there is another possible explanation to the origination of fire, if the fire is considered to be an accidental cause. According to some experts, the blast can be a result of the fire generated due to the oxidation process at large scale within the storage. 

An important role played by WHO in amending the loses.

It is reported that more than five thousand people were injured due to the blast, and over one hundred and thirty people were admitted to extensive care units for a strict observation under life support systems. The hospitals are facing great challenges as most of the doctors are affected due to the blast. Over five hospitals in the area are either non functional or partially, which has resulted in transferring of the injured people all over the nation. A sum of over three lakh people have lost their homes, due to the violent intensity of the explosion. There is an urgent need for shelter and food in the surrounding areas. WHO is playing a major role in responding to the health needs of the families affected by the blast. Medicinal and surgical supplies are already reported to deliver in order to meet the needs of over 2000 patients. Extensive care units and accessories are supplied to hospitals in order to provide backup.  WHO officials are also reported to work with national health authorities in order to have a complete access to the public health impact due to the blast. COVID-19 is yet an imminent threat to human race, and a major concern in Lebanon. Due to the occurrence of the blast, over 17 containers of WHO medical supplies were completely destroyed. Health care workers treating COVID -19, have hence received an external challenge to the already crisis situation. WHO is hence trying to focus on its efforts on ensuring that all the pillars of the response team remain active and a reliable supply of PPE kit continues to be provided in abundance for the people.

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