4 Killed In Chemical Leak at Texas Plant

Family members said brothers Robert Tisnado (left) and Gibby Tisnado were two of the four victims who died in the DuPont chemical plant in LaPorte, Texas, Nov. 15, 2014. (Photo: Courtesy of Tisnado family)
Family members said brothers Robert Tisnado (left) and Gibby Tisnado were two of the four victims who died in the DuPont chemical plant in LaPorte, Texas, Nov. 15, 2014.
(Photo: Courtesy of Tisnado family)

Two brothers were among four workers who died Saturday after a chemical leak at a facility here.

Family members said Robert and Gilbert Tisnado worked side by side at the DuPont chemical plant for six years.

When the chemical leak started early Saturday morning, Gilbert rushed in with a gas mask to try and save his brother, relatives said. Tragically, both brothers died. A fifth worker was hospitalized.

DuPont company spokesman Aaron Woods said a valve failed on a container of methyl mercaptan, a chemical used to make insecticide, around 4 a.m. Saturday. Plant officials don’t know why the valve failed.

Workers were able to get the leak under control by around 6 a.m. By then, five workers had already been exposed to the gas, he said.

Four workers died inside the unit, and a fifth was transported to an area hospital, officials said. Friends said the surviving worker was talking and conscious late Saturday.

“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,” plant manager Randall Clements said. “We are in close touch with them and providing them every measure of support and assistance at this time.”

Clements said the employees’ tenures ranged from eight months to 40 years, and that all 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,” Clements said.

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SOURCE: KHOU-TV
Alice Barr

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