Home / World / Beirut explosion: Survivors tell of the moment disaster struck | Lebanon News

Beirut explosion: Survivors tell of the moment disaster struck | Lebanon News

Beirut, Lebanon – Large parts of Lebanon’s capital were torn apart by the blast this week, killing more than 150 people, injuring more than 5,000 and changing the city’s face.

Al Jazeera spoke to survivors about the moment the disaster occurred on Tuesday, August 4 at 6pm (15:00 GMT).

Toufic Nassar, 32, works in IT

Toufic Nassar Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Toufic Nassar, 32, works in information technology [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

“I was sitting on the couch at my dad’s house when everything started to rumble. We had a few seconds, we hit everyone on the deck and then the windows exploded. It was like slow motion, everything broke, wine bottles fell off shelves, the whole building felt like it existed an earthquake and everything exploded around us. We jumped into the neighbor’s house. She’s an old lady and her oxygen tanks got stuck under the cupboards and we had to lift her. It was a gas bottle that did It was one thing we had to close fast.It’s an old building so there was a lot to do.So I checked my family and started cleaning.

Mariam Noun, 22, project coordinator at a NGO

Mariam Substantiv Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Mariam Noun, 22, project coordinator at a non-governmental organization [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

“I was in a cafe in Beirut’s Raouche district with my friend when the ground shook beneath us. Then came a loud bang and a loud noise that drove air into our ears. I thought Israel was hitting us, and the war has come. I was next to the sea and thought the ground would fall under me and I would end up in the water. People started running out of the cafe, and we ran towards the car to go home. The streets were full of traffic and glass. Beirut was broken, God helps the people. My ears still feel pressed. “

Fahad Hasan, 21, a dental student in Lebanon for summer vacation

Ahsan Homsi Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Fahad Hasan, 21, a dental student in Lebanon for summer vacation [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

“I was watching TV and first there was a big sound, like a voice coming from everywhere. We felt everything shake from the massive voice. Then everything collapsed: glass, the walls, the TV. I hit the floor for 10 seconds and then ran to the balcony to see what was happening. I saw a big red cloud. My parents released me on the streets two hours later and I helped injured people and donated blood. “

Hasan Homsi, 55, owner of a food cart

 Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Hasan Homsi, 55, owner of food cart[[[[Timour Azhari / Al Jazeera]

“I was at my sister’s house in the Ras El Nabeh district drinking coffee. We heard the explosion; the noise was insanely loud. The glass immediately broke and we saw the dead and wounded on the ground. I have been through the whole Lebanese war so it was normal , it felt like I was back.The smell of blood is still in my clothes from helping the wounded.I’m so sad, so sad for this poor people.

Mira Berri, 23, sells accessories

Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Mira Berri, 23, sells accessories[[[[Timour Azhari / Al Jazeera]

“I was walking on Beirut’s Gemmayzeh street, next to a pizza restaurant where one of the buildings collapsed. When we first heard the sound, they shouted that it was an explosion at a bank or something on fire. Then people shouted” Israel! “and then nothing. I remember an ugly feeling. I fell to the ground, my friend protected me and nothing happened to us. We are both ok. We have a house in Mar Mikhael and went to see if our friends were alive or dead They were not there, but they turned out to be good. “

Ali Sheikh, 20, works at the family’s café

Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Ali Sheikh, 20, works at a family café[[[[Timour Azhari / Al Jazeera]

“I was in the cafe with my dad and brother, but there was no one there because of the economic situation. It was an earthquake and we said, ‘Fine, it’s an earthquake, it’s going to happen. “Then suddenly the glass fell on us, the TV flew and all our cups burst. And my dad was in pain. I thought the explosion was right in front of my cafe – we all did, it was so powerful. We went home to a house full of broken glass. “

Imad Aoun, 52, works in construction

 Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Imad Aoun, 52, works in construction [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

“I had just come home to Sidon from Beirut, showered, ate and sat down two or three minutes before the explosion occurred and I jumped out of the chair. I told my wife it was a barrier from the sea. Then my daughter called and said that there had been an explosion in Beirut, I said to her “Are you stupid? The explosion is in Sidon “. It turns out I was an idiot and my daughter was right. My thoughts were paralyzed:” What’s going on? Is it possible an explosion was heard in Beirut in Sidon? ‘It was a dark night, dark and as tragic as possible. You are not sad about your house, but about our big house called Lebanon. “

Miriam Shami, 27, dance teacher and fashion designer

 Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Miriam Shami, 27, dance teacher and fashion designer [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

“I had stopped practicing and drove out of Beirut with three friends. I told them to put on their face masks because I thought there was a checkpoint to look for masks. Then we came to a traffic light at the exit of Beirut. We saw I sent a voice note to my friend Raymond, the first blast hit and I said “Oh Mary!” The second explosion knocked the phone from my hand, I closed my ears and saw a car fly over from the other side. I panicked and tried keep driving because I thought we were going to be shot, but then my brain was calibrated and I knew it was from the fire.Thank you, I was fine but emotional … I already knew I did not want to live here and of course have I do not have a single percent hope. “

Elie Bakar, 24, unemployed degree in mechanical engineering

 Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Elie Bakar, 24, unemployed degree in mechanical engineering[[[[Timour Azhari / Al Jazeera]

“I was on Coral Beach, hanging out and drinking as if nothing was going to happen. Then the explosion. It felt like an earthquake, a shock; everyone was shocked. Many panicked because they knew people working near the gate. We packed ours. things, left and called everyone we needed to be on the road.Our parents have experienced things like this, but it’s a new thing for us.I lived in Abu Dhabi, where there is no such thing as a bombing.So now we move on as if nothing had happened, but deep down we are touched by it. “

Omar Nasr, 43, construction worker

Omar Nasr Lebanon-Beirut-Timour Azhari

Omar Nasr, 43, construction worker[[[[Timour Azhari / Al Jazeera]

“I was walking down the street in Mar. Michael after filming the smoke coming out of the harbor, and ten minutes later heard the sound of a loud explosion. I flew 30 meters in the air, as if someone raised me and sat me 30 meters away. The same pressure that lifted me sat me down with a few cuts. When I tried to get up, I saw projectiles coming at me, glass and debris, so I hid in the middle of the street. The chaos was strange; people lying on the roads. I was looking for my close friend as a crazy person, under chairs and a table, then I found him and treated him. I’ve been through the war and nothing similar has happened. It’s something weird and scary. “

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