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posted on August 11, 2008

The Star: 'Everybody out! Everybody out! My face just got blown off'


COLIN O'CONNOR/TORONTO STAR
Brian Bittles sits in his car with his family in the parking lot
of a temporary shelter at York University on Aug. 10, 2008.
Bittles' face was injured when a series of explosions at a
propane depot in Toronto blew out a window in his home.

By: Robyn Doolittle
Published: August 11, 2008
Source: The Star

Something had shaken Brian Bittles awake.

Lying in the dark, next to his wife Lorraine, Bittles listened carefully. It was a shrill hissing sound, he remembers, not unlike air escaping from a tire. It was coming from the propane plant across the street.

Curious, he tiptoed to the open window. Their bedroom was at the back of the family's twostorey brick home, so he had to press his cheek against the screen to get a good look.

An ominous white mist was shooting into the air. His yard, the street, the propane tanks, everything was shrouded in a blanket of fog.

"Then I realized it wasn't fog. The next thing I know bam! I was flying across the room," said the 45-year-old.

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Content last modified on August 11, 2008, at 08:44 PM EST