SPOKANE, Wash. -- A Pacific Steel spokesperson confirmed one man has died from exposure to leaked chlorine gas.
Employees reported a barrel was accidentally punctured Wednesday morning, leaking a yellow gas. Those in the area said the gas smelled strongly of cleaning products. Many nearby began experiencing breathing trouble and tightness in the throat.
Officials evacuated a four block radius around the plant, located on N. Freya Street.
After misidentifying the gas as Arsenic Trichloride, officials confirmed Friday night that it was chlorine gas that spilled. Chlorine can be dangerous in high quantities or through prolonged exposure. Ten people were transported to the hospital, eight listed in serious condition.
A representative at Pacific Steel said three of their workers hospitalized had dramatically improved by Friday afternoon. One of their employees that was in intensive care has since been released from the hospital.