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(9News (Australia))   The science behind Beirut's massive explosion that leveled a good portion of the city (warning: graphic images)   (9news.com.au) divider line
    More: Scary, Ammonia, Nitrogen, AP Photo, Ammonium nitrate, Beirut, Lebanon, Oklahoma City bombing, Professor  
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7860 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Aug 2020 at 9:05 AM (12 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2020-08-05 8:31:14 AM  
So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.
 
2020-08-05 8:37:30 AM  
Associate Professor Stewart Walker from the school of Forensic, Environmental and Analytical Chemistry at Flinders University said ammonium nitrate is not flammable but will "support a fire by providing oxygen to burn".

stupid Flinders...
 
2020-08-05 9:06:01 AM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


The port, not the city center.
 
2020-08-05 9:10:08 AM  
This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.
 
2020-08-05 9:14:24 AM  
Turns out, keeping a mountain of explosive material unsecured in a warehouse for six years is a bad idea. Who knew?
 
2020-08-05 9:14:33 AM  
Yup, good old ammonium nitrate.  Not the first time, won't be the last time.
 
2020-08-05 9:15:55 AM  

Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.


Fark user imageView Full Size

The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.
 
2020-08-05 9:17:05 AM  
Wrong.  All the generals are telling Mr. Donald JOHN Trump that this was an attack.  An attack that started with a fire in a fireworks warehouse that spread to the warehouse where old fertilizer was stored.  It has all the trademarks of an attack!
 
2020-08-05 9:17:54 AM  
So if you see this on the road. Give it a WIDE berth.
Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 9:19:44 AM  
Fark user imageView Full Size


"hey, cheer up guy! i guess it coulda been worse, right???"
 
2020-08-05 9:21:03 AM  

Wasteland: Yup, good old ammonium nitrate.  Not the first time, won't be the last time.


FT (linked) article - the detailed Bosch explosion was crazy enough (dynamite + Amm. Nitrate??), but the Texas incident description is even more nuts:

"imagine workers filling a ship with bags of ammonium nitrate mixture which already felt oddly warm to the touch, and the repeated failed attempts to put out the later autoignition of the now glowing-red cargo holdas the water of the harbor began to boil around it"
 
2020-08-05 9:21:16 AM  
maybe don't store a bunch of exlosives in a hot place

ever think of that?

hmmmm?

yeah, about that try harder next time

kthxbye
 
2020-08-05 9:22:15 AM  

Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.


Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.
 
2020-08-05 9:22:49 AM  

Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.


Its part of the historic nature of the city. Why are you pushing gentrification?
/sarcasm
//though only barely
///slashes lost in explosion.
 
2020-08-05 9:23:12 AM  

oldweasel: Wasteland: Yup, good old ammonium nitrate.  Not the first time, won't be the last time.

FT (linked) article - the detailed Bosch explosion was crazy enough (dynamite + Amm. Nitrate??), but the Texas incident description is even more nuts:

"imagine workers filling a ship with bags of ammonium nitrate mixture which already felt oddly warm to the touch, and the repeated failed attempts to put out the later autoignition of the now glowing-red cargo holdas the water of the harbor began to boil around it"


To clarify, I am referencing Wasteland'slink, not the Beirut incident link
 
2020-08-05 9:23:38 AM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


Errrrr you might want to take a look then at where your rail, ports, and trucking depots lie if you live in the rust belt. Hopefully they have better zoning where you live.
Generally there will be some pretty dicey industries in your old downtowns or nearby as these were the jobs in walking or mass transit distance during the early and mid 20th century that led to the development of densely populated urban centers.
I'm from st louis, MO... Where we have an uncontained underground fire burning into improperly stored nuclear waste in a landfill near the airport.
I wouldnt be surprised if the Beirut explosion was just a result of poor handling.
 
2020-08-05 9:24:04 AM  

NEDM: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.

Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.


I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important.
 
2020-08-05 9:25:15 AM  

Private_Citizen: NEDM: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.

Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.

I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important.


See the links above, it's like humans never learn....
 
2020-08-05 9:25:47 AM  

Doctor Poop: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

Errrrr you might want to take a look then at where your rail, ports, and trucking depots lie if you live in the rust belt. Hopefully they have better zoning where you live.
Generally there will be some pretty dicey industries in your old downtowns or nearby as these were the jobs in walking or mass transit distance during the early and mid 20th century that led to the development of densely populated urban centers.
I'm from st louis, MO... Where we have an uncontained underground fire burning into improperly stored nuclear waste in a landfill near the airport.
I wouldnt be surprised if the Beirut explosion was just a result of poor handling.


I used to live in St. Louis, and am well aware of that fire. That whole story is a tragedy of mismanagement and illegal behavior.

You'll be lucky if it doesn't get MUCH worse.
 
2020-08-05 9:26:24 AM  

Private_Citizen: NEDM: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.

Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.

I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important.


Dont you try and come on my fark making sense,boy.
 
2020-08-05 9:26:24 AM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


See also: West, Texas

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 9:26:34 AM  

Private_Citizen: I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important


Pretty much everyone agrees on the first one.  In fact, a great deal of the outrage is from people asking what the hell that much AN was doing in the port in the first place, let alone how it was forgotten for six farking years.
 
2020-08-05 9:27:54 AM  
No way man, I was assured by the "I'm not an expert, but" brigades on Twitter that it was a nuke.
 
2020-08-05 9:28:25 AM  

Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.


STILL one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

ALSO one of the best arguments I've seen for material handling laws.
 
2020-08-05 9:29:21 AM  

iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

See also: West, Texas

[Fark user image image 500x332]


Yeah and they were just Making it there. They likely only had small amounts on hand before shipping it out. If that were a warehouse Storing it? That neighborhood would have been erased.
 
2020-08-05 9:29:48 AM  

Rapmaster2000: Wrong.  All the generals are telling Mr. Donald JOHN Trump that this was an attack.  An attack that started with a fire in a fireworks warehouse that spread to the warehouse where old fertilizer was stored.  It has all the trademarks of an attack!


Israel immediately denied responsibility, but the sequence of events is typical of operations carried out by the infamous General Rube Goldberg.
 
2020-08-05 9:30:49 AM  

xanadian: Associate Professor Stewart Walker from the school of Forensic, Environmental and Analytical Chemistry at Flinders University said ammonium nitrate is not flammable but will "support a fire by providing oxygen to burn".

stupid Flinders...


stupid sexy Flinders
 
2020-08-05 9:33:16 AM  

Private_Citizen: NEDM: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.

Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.

I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important.


It's a damned-if-you-do situation.

You have to MOVE it to the storage location too, you know. And that's just as risky as letting it sit for 6 years. What are you going to do, built a dock 30 miles outside of the city just to offload the material?
 
2020-08-05 9:35:07 AM  

JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.


That shows you don't understand what libertarians want, probably at all. Where did you learn your political science, from the media, or from a meme? (You are probably thinking of an anarchist, who believes in no government at all, it is a common mistake made in the big government circles)
--------------------------------------​--------------------------------

On a funny note...

Ammonium nitrate is a white crystalline solid that is primarily used to add nitrogen to soil as a form of fertiliser

I use a white crystalline solid, but it doesn't add nitrogen to soil, it adds fun to parties

Also, whoever wrote this article spelled fertilizer wrong, or hunspell is out of date
 
2020-08-05 9:35:40 AM  
I'm not sure I need a scientist to explain how 3 kilotons of explosives going off in the center of town could level a good portion of a city.
 
2020-08-05 9:36:42 AM  
I can't help but think this was a huge failure of bureaucracy.  So they had to unload this nitrate from a sinking ship because it was an emergency, ok.  Then they stuffed it all I. A warehouse because where else are they going to put it?  Then for the next six years, getting rid of it got embroiled in a perfect storm of safety and environmental concerns until it settled on "out of sight, out of mind."

Right now people's phones are ringing and they're being asked why they didn't do anything about it, and they're saying "it's not my department, I told Bob years ago we need to do something about it."  And Bob will be saying how he filed a form with the proper departments and it never got approval, and there was never any money in the budget to handle it anyway.
 
2020-08-05 9:36:52 AM  

OldJames: JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.

That shows you don't understand what libertarians want, probably at all. Where did you learn your political science, from the media, or from a meme? (You are probably thinking of an anarchist, who believes in no government at all, it is a common mistake made in the big government circles)
--------------------------------------​--------------------------------

On a funny note...

Ammonium nitrate is a white crystalline solid that is primarily used to add nitrogen to soil as a form of fertiliser

I use a white crystalline solid, but it doesn't add nitrogen to soil, it adds fun to parties

Also, whoever wrote this article spelled fertilizer wrong, or hunspell is out of date


Thx. Farkied as a libertarian
 
2020-08-05 9:45:05 AM  
Now's the perfect chance to build the new shipping port 30 miles out of town... since the old one got leveled.
 
2020-08-05 9:46:02 AM  

OldJames: JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.

That shows you don't understand what libertarians want, probably at all. Where did you learn your political science, from the media, or from a meme? (You are probably thinking of an anarchist, who believes in no government at all, it is a common mistake made in the big government circles)
--------------------------------------​--------------------------------

On a funny note...

Ammonium nitrate is a white crystalline solid that is primarily used to add nitrogen to soil as a form of fertiliser

I use a white crystalline solid, but it doesn't add nitrogen to soil, it adds fun to parties

Also, whoever wrote this article spelled fertilizer wrong, or hunspell is out of date


Objectivism is autism, expressed as an existential philosophy.
Libertarianism is autism expressed as a political philosophy.
(PS: I've forgotten more than you'll ever know about the Ayn Rand/Libertarian cult - learned in on the inside).
It's a cheap, crappy intellectual hustle.
 
2020-08-05 9:47:23 AM  
I enjoyed seeing the other story linked on that page. The headline says that Trump has declared this an attack, based on his discussions with "great generals." Imma go out on a limb here and guess that the only great general he consulted with was in a CIV game. That he lost. Then blamed on phalanxes destroying his mech inf units and then called Sid Meier a sick, sick man.
 
2020-08-05 9:49:34 AM  

Sexy Jesus: I enjoyed seeing the other story linked on that page. The headline says that Trump has declared this an attack, based on his discussions with "great generals." Imma go out on a limb here and guess that the only great general he consulted with was in a CIV game. That he lost. Then blamed on phalanxes destroying his mech inf units and then called Sid Meier a sick, sick man.


Having your Panzer division wiped out by Zulu warriors can be a weird experience the first time around.
 
2020-08-05 9:49:41 AM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


Apparently, the 2015 Tianjin explosion involved less than a third of the amount stored here: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki​/2015_T​ianjin_explosions

When you have worse safety standards than China, you're really looking for trouble.
 
2020-08-05 9:49:42 AM  

theresnothinglft: Now's the perfect chance to build the new shipping port 30 miles out of town... since the old one got leveled.


People don't found cities and then construct a suitable port.  Cities tend to grow up around suitable harbors. I guess some of that has changed with mega-construction techniques but nothing beats a quirk of nature for making a great harbor.
 
2020-08-05 9:52:37 AM  

theresnothinglft: Now's the perfect chance to build the new shipping port 30 miles out of town... since the old one got leveled.


With what money?
 
2020-08-05 9:54:26 AM  

Rapmaster2000: Wrong.  All the generals are telling Mr. Donald JOHN Trump that this was an attack.  An attack that started with a fire in a fireworks warehouse that spread to the warehouse where old fertilizer was stored.  It has all the trademarks of an attack!


As opposed to Fark, which quickly turned into "The Jews Did This" yesterday....
 
2020-08-05 9:55:06 AM  

iamskibibitz: See also: West, Texas


Why do they always put nursing homes across the street from schools?

Theres one in my Heights neighborhood in Houston. Seems kinda cruel.
 
2020-08-05 9:55:10 AM  
Very common substance. Wonder how many other huge warehouses exist not unlike this one around the world...

Wonder how many terrorists are taking note....
 
2020-08-05 9:56:22 AM  

NEDM: In fact, a great deal of the outrage is from people asking what the hell that much AN was doing in the port in the first place, let alone how it was forgotten for six farking years.


The AN was confiscated by the Lebanese port authority from a ship, the MV Rhosus, that ran into legal troubles while docked in Beirut.  https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/​2​-750-tons-of-ammonium-nitrate-was-impo​unded-in-beirut-s-port-after-it-was-se​ized-from-an-abandoned-ship-in-2014-ye​ars-before-the-explosion/ar-BB17BeNF
 
2020-08-05 9:58:30 AM  

litheandnubile: maybe don't store a bunch of exlosives in a hot place

ever think of that?

hmmmm?

yeah, about that try harder next time

kthxbye


It being hot wasn't really the problem.

It being on fire, however, was.

/I guess it got very hot once it was on fire
 
2020-08-05 9:58:52 AM  

Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.


The city was built around the port, like Boston, or NYC.
 
2020-08-05 9:59:18 AM  

Rapmaster2000: Wrong.  All the generals are telling Mr. Donald JOHN Trump that this was an attack.  An attack that started with a fire in a fireworks warehouse that spread to the warehouse where old fertilizer was stored.  It has all the trademarks of an attack!


The capitalized JOHN is a nice touch.
 
2020-08-05 9:59:35 AM  

geekbikerskum: NEDM: In fact, a great deal of the outrage is from people asking what the hell that much AN was doing in the port in the first place, let alone how it was forgotten for six farking years.

The AN was confiscated by the Lebanese port authority from a ship, the MV Rhosus, that ran into legal troubles while docked in Beirut.  https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/2​-750-tons-of-ammonium-nitrate-was-impo​unded-in-beirut-s-port-after-it-was-se​ized-from-an-abandoned-ship-in-2014-ye​ars-before-the-explosion/ar-BB17BeNF


That is known.  I meant why it was being stored in the port, considering its incredible danger.
 
2020-08-05 10:00:28 AM  
Fark user imageView Full Size

"Got a filthy old warehouse complex that you want to level to the ground but you cant afford an expensive demolition crew?? Then you need 'BLAST-0-MATIC'! Simply apply 3000 tons, wait ten years and voila'! Problem solved!"
 
2020-08-05 10:00:31 AM  
And in the meantime, how much fertilizer been used in Lebanon over the last 5 years that was paid for by the people who farm when they had 2700 tons of it sitting in the middle of the most important port in the country just taking up space?
 
2020-08-05 10:00:51 AM  

geekbikerskum: NEDM: In fact, a great deal of the outrage is from people asking what the hell that much AN was doing in the port in the first place, let alone how it was forgotten for six farking years.

The AN was confiscated by the Lebanese port authority from a ship, the MV Rhosus, that ran into legal troubles while docked in Beirut.  https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/2​-750-tons-of-ammonium-nitrate-was-impo​unded-in-beirut-s-port-after-it-was-se​ized-from-an-abandoned-ship-in-2014-ye​ars-before-the-explosion/ar-BB17BeNF


...and then they just left the giant pile of ammonium nitrate in a warehouse in the middle of the city and forgot about.  Brilliant!
 
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