Student Burned in Chemistry Experiment: 'I Looked Like Something Out of a Horror Movie'
Alonzo Yanes suffered burns to 30 percent of his body in the explosion at his Manhattan high school.
An explosion in chemistry class engulfed Alonzo Yanes in a fireball, leaving him burned over 30 percent of his body in January 2014.
"I remember feeling this immense heat completely come forward and wrap around my entire body,” he told Inside Edition. "I remember these flashes of blue and orange just flying toward my face. I remember feeling this burning sensation around my head."
Yanes was 16 years old when the botched chemistry experiment happened at Beacon High School in Manhattan.
The teacher was conducting a popular experiment known as the "Rainbow Experiment." It's supposed to show to show how igniting various salts can produce different colored flames.
Yanes says he was just a couple feet from the experiment, and as the teacher poured a highly flammable substance from a container into a bowl of nitrate, the explosion occurred.
Yanes says he dropped to the floor and rolled around to put out the flames, crying out for help.
The student and his parents eventually sued the instructor and the New York City Department of Education.
In court, his lawyer played a demonstration of the mishap, and when the flammable liquid erupted, the flames reached as far as 10 feet.
Yanes spent five months in the hospital and underwent many painful surgeries.
"As funny as it sounds, I kinda looked like something out of a horror movie," he said.
A jury recently awarded Yanes nearly $60 million this summer and his attorney Ben Rubinowitz says this wasn't about money but making classrooms safer for everyone.
"If the teacher is going to undertake a demonstration like this, you have got to take precautions, you have got to take safety measures," his attorney said.
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