One month after Beirut blast, rescuers find signs of life amid the rubble

A team of rescuers sift through the rubble in Beirut.
A team of rescuers sift through the rubble in Beirut. © Reuters/ Mohamed Azakir

Buried in the rubble of Beirut’s collapsed buildings one month after twin explosions at the city’s port tore through the capital, rescue workers miraculously find signs of life.  


Prompted by signs of a heartbeat, workers dig through the rubble of a collapsed building on one of the worst-hit streets in Beirut's August 4 explosion.

Using a sensor, a Chilean search and rescue team said on Thursday evening they had detected what could be the sounds of a heartbeat, pulsing at 18 to 19 beats per minute. Hopes of finding a survivor were put on hold, however, when the building was deemed too unstable for rescue teams to continue without the use of heavy machinery.

“We tried to get through the small tunnel but it has metal rods in it and for this reason we are unable to get through, and we're not able to cut these rods because they could be keeping some ruins in place,” said Michel Al-Mur from the Lebanese Civil Defence.

“So we will wait until tomorrow when the lifters come we can lift it all and see what is really happening."

The explosion has devastated Lebanon, which was already grappling with a financial crisis and political instability.

Damage to homes and infrastructure has been estimated at $4.6 billion. Around 300,000 people have been left homeless, while others are unable to access funds from the bank in order to make repairs.

Although the explosion has diminished the port’s capacity to handle wheat and cereal imports, the World Food Programme said it did not foresee Lebanon heading towards a food crisis. 

Watch FRANCE 24's report by clicking on the player above.


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