Authorities in Texas are looking into a’mass casualty incident’ at LyondellBasell following a chemical plant leak.
Authorities in Texas are investigating a leak at the LyondellBasell chemical facility in La Porte, which has resulted in the deaths of two people and the hospitalization of 30 more.
A chemical mixture escaped at the plant on Tuesday approximately 7:30 a.m., causing the catastrophe.
“Around 100,000 pounds of a combination containing acetic acid were leaked. “At this time, cleanup is ongoing,” LyondellBasell stated in a statement.
“During the event, air monitoring did not reveal any actionable levels, and monitoring is ongoing.”
The company said it makes acetic acid to meet food-safety regulations and utilizes it in plastic bottles, textiles, and other products.
Although the incident has been dubbed a “leak,” Harris County Fire Marshal Laurie Christensen said officials are still gathering information.
She remarked, “Sometimes the wording in these instances when there’s a leak makes you think of things pouring out.”
“A leak could potentially be caused by something exploding on the top and releasing the chemical. So as we get started on the investigation, we’ll be able to go into that in more detail.”
Two contractors died as a result of the incident, and 30 workers were hospitalized. While one employee was treated for burns, the rest of the workers developed respiratory problems.
The identity of the two contractors have not been revealed by authorities. The leak’s cause is being investigated, and the corporation is collaborating with authorities.
The incident occurred about a week after a similar occurrence involving a hydroxyethyl acrylate leak at the Dow Chemical factory in La Porte. Shelter-in-place orders were issued, however they were eventually removed.
An evacuation order issued by the city’s emergency management office remained in effect for everyone within a half-mile radius of the scene.