On Saturday, November 15th, a hazardous chemical leak resulted in the death of four DuPont and Co employees. The chemical in question has been identified as methyl mercaptan. The employees who passed away were without necessary safety equipment, namely respirators, when the leak occurred.
The DuPont chemical plant is a large, five-story building in Texas and it is unclear as to whether or not the ventilation fans were in operation at the time of the accident. One attorney involved in the case called the plant a "beat-up fertilizer plant" that lacked modern equipment.
Methyl mercaptan is especially dangerous in poorly ventilated and enclosed areas and can result in asphyxiation. It is easily and rapidly absorbed through inhalation, making immediate action necessary if inhaled.
Other Workers Receive Minor Injuries
Roughly eight other workers managed to get out of the building with minimal physical harm. One was reportedly hospitalized for a brief period of time. Although one worker was in possession of an emergency air pack, it was not effective and resulted in their death.
DuPont released a statement saying that they are cooperating with the investigations surrounding the leak. The leak was contained shortly after the accident, which began around 4AM on Saturday.