One month on, 10 facts about the Beirut port blast

This picture taken on August 4, 2020 shows a general view of the scene of an explosion at the port of Lebanon's capital Beirut.

AFP

AMMAN - One month after a massive port explosion tore through the heart of Lebanon's capital, Beirut, emigration and poverty are on the rise in a country that was already grappling with financial crisis, political instability and the new coronavirus.

READ: Utter devastation as toll from Beirut blast tops 100

Here are some facts about the impact of the blast, caused by 2,750 tonnes of improperly stored explosive material:

1. The explosion caused up to $4.6-billion in damage to homes and infrastructure with up to $3.5-billion in other losses, such as the knock to economic output.

Smoke rises from the site of an explosion in Beirut, Lebanon August 4, 2020.

Smoke rises from the site of an explosion in Beirut, Lebanon August 4, 2020.

Reuters

2. The economic crisis, COVID-19 and the explosion have driven poverty rates up to 55 percent from 28 percent in 2019.

3. The blast killed 190 people, injured 6,500 and left 300,000 homeless as 50,000 houses were damaged.

Rescue workers dig through the rubble of a badly damaged building in Lebanon's capital Beirut, in search of possible survivors from a mega-blast at the adjacent port one month ago.

Rescue workers dig through the rubble of a badly damaged building in Lebanon's capital Beirut, in search of possible survivors from a mega-blast at the adjacent port one month ago.

AFP/Joseph Eid

4. Hunger is expected to worsen with more than 50 percent of the population at risk of failing to access basic foods by the end of 2020.

5. The main entry point for food imports, Beirut port's capacity to handle bulk cereal imports has collapsed to about a fifth of its level before the blast.

Diggers remove earth at the blast site next to the silos at the port of Beirut in the aftermath of the massive explosion there that ravaged Lebanon's capital.

Diggers remove earth at the blast site next to the silos at the port of Beirut in the aftermath of the massive explosion there that ravaged Lebanon's capital.

AFP/Anwar Amro

6. Between $35 and $40-million is needed in the next three months for an immediate large-scale cash transfer to meet the basic needs of 90,000 affected individuals, and to create short-term jobs for 15,000 people.

7. Hospitals, healthcare centres and maternity wards suffered heavy damage and some 4,000 pregnant women in need of antenatal care were displaced.

Ted Chaiban, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, checks the damages inside the Karantina Governmental Hospital in Beirut.

Ted Chaiban, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, checks the damages inside the Karantina Governmental Hospital in Beirut.

AFP/Ibrahim Amro

8. About 25,000 workers from Lebanon's large migrant community -- mostly from Ethiopia, Bangladesh and the Philippines -- were directly affected by the blast, with 150 injured and 15 dead.

9. Some Lebanese have begun leaving the country, with one research firm reporting a 36 percent increase in daily passenger departures, while Google searches for the word "immigration" from Lebanon hit a 10-year peak.

READ: Drone images give intimate view of Beirut destruction

10. Some 640 historic buildings of cultural significance were damaged by the explosion, 60 of which are at risk of collapse. ​​​​​​​

Heavily damaged buildings in the Beirut neighbourhood of Mar Mikhail overlooking the city's port.

Heavily damaged buildings in the Beirut neighbourhood of Mar Mikhail overlooking the city's port.

AFP/Patrick Baz
Source
Reuters