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DuPont Four Killed: 4 Killed, 1 Hospitalized After La Porte Plant Gas Leak, Investigation Begins [VIDEO]

Travelers Today       By    Althea Serad

Updated: Nov 16, 2014 11:44 PM EST

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DuPont Four Killed - A DuPont chemical plant had a deadly gas leak Saturday, killing four workers and one hospitalized for observation.

Among the four killed by the DuPont gas leak was 60-year-old Crew Supervisor Wade Baker who had been in DuPont for more than 40 years, a female employee who had been with the company for eight months, and brothers Robert and Gilbert Tisnado who had been working at the DuPont chemical plant for six years.

When the DuPont gas leak started Saturday morning, relatives said Gilbert tried to save his brother by running into the factory. Unfortunately, both brothers died in the tragedy.

Aaron Woods, a company spokesman, made a statement addressing the incident. He said this "DuPont four killed" tragedy which happened 4 a.m. Saturday resulted from a valve failing on a container of methyl mercaptan - a chemical used as feedstock to make insecticides and fungicides.

According to plant manager Randall Clements, the methyl mercaptan had a rotten-egg smell when mixed with odorless natural gas. The leak was contained around 6 a.m., the New York Times reports. However, by then, five workers were already exposed to the gas.

"There are no words to fully express the loss we feel or the concern and sympathy we extend to the families of the employees and their co-workers," Clements said. "We are in close touch with them and providing them every measure of support and assistance at this time."

Clements added that the employees undergo "very extensive training - not only book training, but they must also demonstrate knowledge before you can work in a unit."

"The operators were doing the jobs they were trained to do," he said.

The odor from the "DuPont four killed" incident was carried to as far away as Sugar Land and parts of south and southwest Houston. Spokesman Woods said the odor is not hazardous, and added that after air quality tests in the area, results came back normal.

Meanwhile, local emergency officials have decided not to issue a shelter-in-place order to the general public, reports USA Today.

Woods added that once the chemical goes into the air, it eventually dissipates and is no longer hazardous. By the end of Saturday, the company expected the odor to have gone away.

As of the current moment, leak in DuPont with four killed doesn't pose any threat to the community of La Porte, Texas, a town approximately 20 miles east of Houston, according to the company.

The La Porte facility currently has 320 employees.

According to plant administrators, they are still working to notify the families of the workers affected by the "DuPont four killed" incident.

"As part of that investigation, we are conducting our own top-to-bottom review of this incident and we will share what we learn with the relevant authorities," Clemens said.

Antonio Arriola, 50, a worker from another company at the complex, said the news is extremely sad. He added that workers risks really do haunt all plant workers.

"There's danger in the plants, you can always feel it," he said.

Meanwhile, plant officials still do not know the reason for the valve failure which resulted in the "DuPont four killed" tragedy.

DuPont opened in 1946. The plant manufactured chemicals for different markets including agriculture and clothing. One of La Porte's main products is herbicides, and according to the company's website, it's also contains the world's largest polyvinyl alcohol plant, used in weaving polyester blends.

Officials said the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality have already been notified of the "DuPont four killed" incident.

Federal investigators are also gathering to probe for answers into the cause of the incident, reports CHRON. A team with 7 members from the Chemical Safety Board arrived at the plant area Sunday. The independent federal agency is tasked to examine industrial chemical accidents that result in death, serious injury or substantial property damage.

See Now: The U.S. had the highest number of Most Wanted properties, dominating the Hotels.com Loved By Guests Awards 2018

Tags
DuPont four killed, dupont, La Porte, Texas chemical leak, DuPont gas leak, methyl mercaptan
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