Evangelos Florakis

11 July 2011, Evangelos Florakis Naval Base near Zygi (CYPRUS)

Cause: Explosion

98 containers of explosives that were being stored for 2½ years in the sun self-detonated on the Evangelos Florakis Naval Base near Zygi (CYPRUS).

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Consequences:

  • 13 people killed, including the Commander of the Navy (Cyprus’s most senior naval officer), the base commander, four navy personnel and six firefighters.
  • 62 people were injured
  • 10,000 persons evacuated
  • fragments up-to 10-km
  • hundreds of buildings damaged, including the largest power station of Cyprus’ electricity

As a result, much of Cyprus was without power in the immediate aftermath of the incident and rolling blackouts were initiated in order to conserve supplies.

The Cypriot Defence Minister and the Commander-in-Chief of the Cypriot National Guard both resigned.

Angered by the government’s failure to dispose of the munitions, which had been seized in 2009, several thousand citizens staged demonstrations in the capital Nicosia and other cities, every day in the week following the accident.

The EU prognosticated that the cost of the explosion could be just over 10% of the country’s economy.

More details here on immediate aftermath, political and economic repercussions.