Photo Credit: Wikimedia / Parsa 2au
City of Karaj, Iran on May 11, 2021

A massive fire broke out “in a warehouse or factory” Monday evening at around 7 pm local time in the area of the Karaj special road in the city of Karaj, Iran.

According to Ynet, “A large explosion was reported to have occurred at a warehouse in western Tehran.”

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According to the semi-official Iranian Student News Agency (ISNA) the “widespread fire” broke out in a group of warehouses located “west of Tehran”.

“This fire occurred in a warehouse of factory in the area of the Karaj Special Road near Azadegan [Highway]. . . Smoke from this fire is going up to the sky and it is clearly seen from a distance,” Seyed Jalal Maleki told ISNA.

“The place of the fire was a large warehouse where all kinds of goods, even household appliances, were stored,” Maleki said. Several of the warehouses, “each about 60 square meters in area” caught fire, he added.

The Karaj Special Road is the place where a factory that manufactured centrifuges for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization (IAEO) was targeted last month. The factory was heavily damaged.

It’s not clear how this fire got started. Information about injuries is not yet available, Maleki said.

The Tamliki Property Organization, known as the Organization for Collection and Sale of State-owned Properties of Iran (OCSSPI), alleged that due to the high temperature in Tehran in recent days, “there is speculation that the fire was caused by a power outage,” according to ISNA.

Nationwide power outages also apparently stopped the huge roadside clock showing the Iranian regime’s countdown to Israel’s annihilation, an Iranian immigrant to the United States tweeted.

The Proprietary Property Organization which allegedly owns the warehouses added, “Any comment on the details of the fire is the responsibility of the fire and technical authorities.”

The city of Karaj, a major industrial city filled with factories, is the capital of Alborz Province in Iran but is also a suburb of Tehran, which is 12 miles (20 kilometers) away. The city is in Karaj County, with factories that produce sugar, textiles, wire and alcohol.

The Tehran-Karaj Highway, Karaj Special Road and Bakeri Expressway are all part of the county’s highway system. The Payam International Airport, opened in 1997, is also in Karaj. The airport is operated by Payam Aviation Services Company as part of the Payam Special Economic Zone.

Iran’s Armament Industries Group, a subsidiary of Iran’s Defense Industries Organization located on the Karaj Special Road has been “involved in Iran’s nuclear or ballistic missile activities, according to an annex to UN Security Council Resolution 1929 of June 9, 2010,” quoted by Iran Watch.

The group manufactures and services small arms and light weapons, large and medium caliber guns, cannons, self-propelled guns, howitzers, rocket and mortar launchers, SPG-9 and 106 mm recoilless anti-tank guns, assault and sniper rifles, submachine guns, pistols and hunting guns. Affiliated complexes include Imam Ali Industries, Jangafzarsazi, Esfahan Alloy Steel and Fajr-e-Shiraz, Iran Watch reported.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.