New Hampshire Man Recalls Taiwan Fire: It Was Instantaneous

ABC News
Date: Sep 22, 2015
By: kathy mccormack, associated press

A New Hampshire man recovering at home from serious burns suffered in a water park AR-150709862explosion in Taiwan says support from his family and friends have kept him going as he thinks about that June day the flammable powder blew up over a stage.

“It was so instantaneous,” Alex Haas said Tuesday. “It was just like flipping a light switch. You could see outlines of people in the fire, but it was, ‘Run as fast you can. Get out.’ That’s what I did.”

Haas, 27, said a group called Color Play Asia had rented out part of the park for a party on June 27 and he was standing in an empty swimming pool near the stage at the time the powder was released.

“It’s just filled with all the dust,” he said in a phone interview from his home in Mont Vernon. “Every time you take a step, you pick dust up and it gets on fire. So it just kept burning and burning.”

Media in Taiwan have reported that 11 people died and more than 500 were injured.

Haas, who had been teaching in Taipei, suffered burns on about 90 percent of his body. He managed to get to a hospital fairly quickly. “I had a little trouble with the (tracheotomy) tube going in, but they got it in, they kept me alive, they did a damn fine job doing that.”     [FULL  STORY]

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