(TIMES OF ISRAEL) – A huge fire broke out Thursday at the Port of Beirut, sending up a thick column of black smoke and raising new panic among traumatized residents after last month's catastrophic blast at the same site killed nearly 200 people.
It was unclear what caused the blaze at the facility, which was decimated by the August 4 explosion when nearly 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate blew up and sent out a shock wave that caused widespread damage and was felt as far away as the island of Cyprus.
Dark smoke covered the capital on Thursday as army helicopters sprayed water over the orange flames leaping from the ground.
Advertisement - story continues below
The Lebanese army said the fire started in the port's duty-free zone at a warehouse with containers of tires, oil and other flammable materials.
Civil Defense chief Raymond Khattar said putting out the fire was taking longer because it was rubber and oil burning.
"Flammable materials like this take time to be completely extinguished," he said.