More than 500 injured in explosion at Taiwan water park

Story highlights

  • Water park: A separate marketing firm put on the "Color Play Asia" party
  • Video shows a fireball erupting, followed by people running through flames
  • Firefighters believe a flammable powder exploded in midair, according to state news

(CNN)At least 510 people were injured -- 183 of them hospitalized in intensive care units -- after flammable powder apparently exploded in midair at a recreational water park in Taiwan, the East Asian island's official Central News Agency reported.

Eight of the injured were reported to be in critical condition Sunday morning. Forty-three people had been discharged from hospitals after treatment.
The flames erupted when the unknown 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.
More than 500 injured in explosion at Taiwan water park
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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."