More than 500 injured in explosion at Taiwan water park – CNN
(CNN)Taiwan’s Ministry of Health and Welfare put out a call for medical supplies and skin grafts for those injured after flammable powder exploded in midair at a recreational water park, Taiwanese media reported. They say authorities have asked Taiwan’s Organ Registry and Sharing center to coordinate the effort.
By early Sunday evening, there were no fatalities, but the total number of injuries had risen to 519, according to the Public Health Department of the New Taipei City government.
Most of the victims are suffering from burns.
Of the injured, 182 are hospitalized in intensive care units, Taipei officials said. More than 60 have been discharged after treatment.
Most of the victims are Taiwanese. The Public Health Dept. says 507 are from Taiwan, three are from Hong Kong, one is from Macao, seven are from other countries. The nationality of one victim is unknown.
The firestorm erupted when a flammable powder substance blew up over a stage around 8:30 p.m. Saturday (8:30 a.m. ET) at Formosa Fun Coast, firefighters said, according to the CNA report.
CNA reported that “the fire was quickly brought under control,” but not before hundreds suffered injuries.
Video showed a massive fireball suddenly engulfing the stage, followed by screaming people running for their lives through flames.
Some people used large, inflated inner tubes as stretchers to carry out the injured, CNA reported.
Calling it the “worst incident of mass injury (ever) in New Taipei,” Taiwan’s most populous city, Mayor Eric Chu called for ambulance support from neighboring Taipei, Taoyuan and Keelung. In addition, Taiwanese defense ministry spokesman Luo Shao-he said all military hospitals in northern Taiwan were prepared to take patients.
Formosa Fun Coast indicated the fiery explosion occurred during a “Color Play Asia” party put on by a separate marking company that leased out space at the park.
“We are very regretful (for) this accident that caused injuries to many victims,” Formosa Fun Coast said in a statement. “The most urgent matter currently for us is to handle and assist with … victims on the scene and work comprehensively with the New Taipei Fire Department.”