According to ABC13 News, two contractors at the LyondellBasell chemical plant were tragically killed and 30 employees were hospitalized when a work-related accident happened late Tuesday night. The incident, which appears to be a chemical leak, occurred in the facility located at 1515 Miller Cut-Off Road at about 7:35 p.m.
Among the injured, one worker suffered burns. No further details have been given about the victims or the extent of their injuries. According to LyondellBasell officials, all other employees and contractors had been accounted for.
According to Harris County Fire Marshal Laurie, she said:
“Sometimes the terminology in these situations, when there’s a leak, you think of something pouring out, but a leak could also be something exploded off the top and the chemical came out.
So, once we get into the investigation, we’ll be able to specifically detail that out. But when that came out, obviously it impacted a lot of people. So at this point, we, the fire marshal’s office, are calling it a chemical explosion until we know more.”
In an update from LyondellBasell officials Wednesday morning, approximately 100,000 pounds of acetic acid was released before the leak was quickly stopped, site manager Stephen Goff said.
According to LyondellBasell, acetic acid can cause severe burns and is harmful if swallowed or inhaled.
LyondellBasell sent out an updated statement on the incident early Wednesday morning:
“As of 10 p.m. on Tuesday, July 27, 2021, we have accounted for all personnel who were working within the acetyls unit area of our La Porte Complex, where the leak occurred. This unit was shut down earlier today for planned maintenance. The leak is stopped and clean-up is in progress. Air monitoring continues to demonstrate no levels of concern for the community. All appropriate regulatory agencies have been notified.
We are saddened to confirm two contractors were fatally injured in this incident. Five contractors and a LyondellBasell employee were transported to local hospitals for treatment. Our thoughts and prayers go out to these individuals and their families.
We appreciate the assistance of emergency responders from the City of La Porte and Channel Industries Mutual Aid who responded to the incident. An investigation into the cause of this incident is already underway.”
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or tragically killed by the chemical leak at LyondellBasell chemical plant in La Porte, Texas, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our experienced chemical explosion lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard LLP today for a free, confidential consultation.
Morrow & Sheppard LLP will follow up with any updates to the investigation as information becomes available.