183 from Taiwan water park blast still in critical condition

TAIPEI - A total of 242 people, who were badly burned after engulfed in flames caused by a dust explosion at a water park in New Taipei, were being treated at intensive wards Friday with 183 still in critical condition, according to the latest official

statistics related to the accident.

As of Friday, there were 375 injured in the dust explosion and the ensuing fire who remain undergoing treatment at 42 hospitals in 13 cities and counties, respectively, National Health Insurance Administration Director-General Huang San-kuei said, citing the tallies compiled by the Ministry of Health and Welfare.

Nearly 500 people were injured in an inferno caused by igniting coloured powder during a party at Formosa Fun Coast June 27, seven of whom have since succumbed to death.

New Taipei Mayor Eric Chu described the accident as the worst human disaster in the city's history.

Victim's Family Donates Funeral Subsidy to Survivors

The family of a 20-year-old man who died of severe burns after being engulfed in a flash fire at a water park in New Taipei last month has donated its funeral subsidy of NT$1 million (S$43,800) to others injured in the accident.

"Leave (the money) to the injured who need medical care and rehabilitation therapy," the mother of Chen Tien-shun said Friday.

Chen passed away at his home in Banqiao, New Taipei on July 6, shortly after his family decided to bring him home so the dying man could be with his family.

Doctors at a local hospital had fought for 10 days without success to save the life of the college junior, who suffered burns to about 50 per cent of his body.

He was the third person to succumb to injuries sustained in the Formosa Fun Coast accident, which occurred on June 27.

As of Friday, seven of the nearly 500 injured in the incident have died from severe burns, while 242 are still being treated at intensive care wards at hospitals, 183 of whom are in critical condition.

The donation was revealed after New Taipei's Social Welfare Department discovered a deposit made in the name of Chen Tien-shun in a special bank account the city government opened to collect donations for relief aid to the dust explosion victims.

Asked if the NT$1 million was sent by them, Chen's mother confirmed it was she who wired the money into the bank account, and expressed gratitude to the society which she said has been very generous in sending aid to the victims in the water park inferno.

The money had been given to the family by officials of the New Taipei City government soon after Chen died.

The department said that as of 11 a.m. Friday, there have been 11,390 donations totaling nearly NT$1.29 billion to the Formosa Coast Fun dust explosion relief bank account.