A large blast rocked the site of a former factory of Israel Military Industries in the central Israeli city of Herzliya on Thursday night, local residents reported, along with heavy smoke and a smell of sulfur in the nearby area.
A crater with a diameter of about seven meters was formed at the site of the explosion, Fire and Rescue Services said.
Israel Police units are scanning the area for more information, while the IDF stated that military activity in the area was ruled out as the reason for the blast.
The residents of the area were ordered to close the windows and stay inside, out of concern that harmful gases were released by the explosion. There is no danger to the residents or property at the moment.
פיצוץ חזק באזור הרצליה עדיין לא ברור מה מקורו.כוחות משטרה בודקים. תושבים מדווחים על ריח של חומר נפץ. pic.twitter.com/senOiLKNUB— Amram (@el_amram) June 22, 2023
"It sounded like the end of the world. We saw fire and flames from afar," a resident of Herzliya told N12. "There were very strong explosions, the whole house shook and the windows almost cracked."
The sound of the explosion was heard in Givatayim, Kiryat Ono, and Rosh Haayin, Ynet reported.
Past incidents at the Israel Military Industries site
The explosion on Thursday was not the first such incident at the Israel Military Industries site.
In 1992, two people were killed and over 60 others were injured in a blast at the munitions plant while it was still operational. That explosion was caused by gunpowder stored outside storehouses that was ignited, according to Globes. The blast caused damages over a 10km radius.
This is a developing story.