Beirut explosion aftermath | USA TODAY


A massive explosion rocked Beirut with the force of an earthquake on Tuesday, followed by a shock wave that blew out windows and caused widespread damage across the Lebanese capital.

At least 100 people were killed and more than 4,000 wounded, according to an official with the Lebanese Red Cross, George Kettaneh, who also warned that the death toll could rise further. Health Minister Hassan Hamad had earlier reported at least 70 deaths.

Injured residents flooded hospitals, pushing them past capacity. Medical officials pleaded for blood donations.

The blast, which struck with the force of a 3.5 magnitude earthquake, according to Germany’s geosciences center GFZ, followed a fire that broke out in the city’s port area, based on multiple videos from the scene.

» Subscribe to USA TODAY:
» Watch more on this and other topics from USA TODAY:
» USA TODAY delivers current local and national news, sports, entertainment, finance, technology, and more through award-winning journalism, photos, videos and VR.