Authorities in Texas are investigating a leak at the LyondellBasell chemical plant in La Porte that left two dead and 30 hospitalized.

The incident took place on Tuesday around 7:30 a.m., when a chemical mixture leaked at the plant.

“Approximately 100,000 pounds of a mixture, which includes acetic acid, was released. Cleanup is continuing at this time,” LyondellBasell said a statement. 

“Air monitoring conducted during the incident did not indicate actionable levels and monitoring is ongoing.”

The company revealed it produces acetic acid to meet requirements when shipping food and uses the chemical in plastic bottles, textiles, and more.

Although the term “leak” has been used to describe the incident, Harris County Fire Marshal Laurie Christensen said officials are still working on gathering details.

“Sometimes the terminology in these situations when there’s a leak, you think of something pouring out,” she explained. 

“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.”

The leak resulted in the death of two contractors and the hospitalization of 30 workers. While one person was treated for burns, the rest of the employees suffered from respiratory complications.

Authorities have not released the identities of the two contractors. The cause of the leak is under investigation and the company is cooperating with officials.

The incident comes almost a week after the Dow Chemical facility in La Porte had a similar incident involving a hydroxyethyl acrylate leak. Officials issued a shelter-in-place order that was later lifted. 

However, an evacuation order from the city’s office of emergency management remained in place for anyone within a half-mile radius of the location.

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