2 workers die at plant after being overcome by chemical

Published: May. 23, 2011 at 1:47 AM CDT|Updated: May. 27, 2011 at 8:43 AM CDT
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PLAQUEMINE, LA (WAFB) - Two people died inside a chemical plant vessel south of Plaquemine on Sunday.

The Louisiana State Police said its hazardous materials hotline received a call around 1 p.m. about two people unconscious at the Shintech Plant.

Lt. Doug Cain with LSP said a contractor went inside the vessel to get tools he forgot and was overcome by an unknown chemical.

When another Shintech employee went in behind him, that person was also overcome by the chemical and died.

"We believe it was an oxygen-deficit environment," Cain explained. "They were overcome by some sort of chemical. There wasn't enough oxygen and both of them went unconscious and ultimately died."

The names of the victims have not been released.

Autopsies are scheduled for Monday.

Shintech has been under construction since 2005 and will make chlorine, caustic soda and other chemicals.

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