via YouTube

Life can change in a matter of just a few minutes. When we least expect it, we could be running right into a potentially dangerous situation without even knowing it.

Recently, a man was walking down Farmers Boulevard on St. Albans in Queens, New York. He was heading to a store in which he would pay his phone bill. It was a normal errand day and he never expected what would happen later.

As Barry West approached the store he walked near a gutter and then suddenly there was a deafening sound coming out from below, he also felt a small tremor under his feet and suddenly a huge flame emerged from the gutter and rose several feet above the sidewalk.

Barry West was engulfed in flames but perhaps a reflex reaction saved him from being right in the path of the flames. Nevertheless, Barry was knocked down pretty hard to the ground and suffered second-degree burns over a large portion of his body.


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Luckily, this 57-year-old had managed to move a couple of inches to the side right before the blast and thus avoid much more severe burns.

The authorities are currently investigating the reasons for the detonation of the underground conduit but the causes are unknown and no hypothesis has yet been ruled out.

Barry was quickly referred to the Nassau University Medical Center where doctors are trying to recover the damage he suffered especially to his back, his hands, and his face from the direct exposure to fire.

The footage captured by a security camera in a nearby building was published and quickly went viral on social networks where thousands of people have commented on the surprising event and have sent messages of support to Barry wishing his speedy recovery.