The Shanghai Oriental Sports Center, the venue for the city’s Color Run this year, has pulled out of the event in the wake of the “party powder” explosion at a Taiwan water park that left one person dead and nearly 500 more injured, Shanghai Daily reports.
The Color Run has been adopted in countries around the world and last year attracted nearly 5,000 people to the Oriental Sports Center in Pudong. Participants in the event are sprayed with fistfuls of multicolored powder similar to that which sparked a massive blaze at the Formosa Fun Coast Water Park in New Taipei City on Saturday.
The sports center, which jointly organized last year’s 5k run with the international event management company IMG, has withdrawn from staging the competition this year, citing safety concerns.
“Last year’s event in Shanghai was a success, and we hope it can be held in the city again,” Wang Yang, an employee at the Beiing IMG branch, said in the Daily report, adding that the company is already seeking out another venue.
“I’ve watched the video of the blast. They used a machine to spray powder in high densities into the crowd, which is totally different from what we do,” he said.
“We make sure that powder is thrown only in spacious, open areas, and we strictly control the flow of people.
IMG has held over 100 Color Runs across the world without accidents.
“We are preparing a statement that we will release in the coming days to explain the situation, but Color Run participants have no reason to worry about their safety,” he said.
Nearly 200 people were left in critical condition after a large volume of colored powder was spewed out into the air and caught fire during the “Color Play Asia Party” on Saturday. It’s believed that the mid-air blast was triggered by “sparks from the machinery or lighting equipment”.
[Image via Shanghai Kaiwind]