Lake Charles man dies while cleaning chemical tank

Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 9:13 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 23, 2022 at 6:37 PM CST
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Sulphur, LA (KPLC) - State police are investigating after a man died in a hazardous chemical accident at Holeshot Tank Wash.

State police say Alvin Lively, 48, of Lake Charles, was inside a tank while working at Holeshot Tank Wash off Hwy 108 in Carlyss.

Police say Lively was washing the tank when he was found unresponsive Tuesday afternoon. Police say troopers received a call to investigate the incident around 2 p.m.

Trooper First Class Derek Senegal could not confirm whether Lively was wearing protective equipment.

“He was found inside of the tank unresponsive. Have to make sure that whatever type of, if he had some type of whether he had some type of PPE, personal protective equipment on, that he had the right stuff that’s on. I can’t say that he did, but that’s all part of the investigation,” said Senegal.

Senegal says the truck, owned by Republic Services, was dropped off for cleaning on Nov. 18. It contained pyrolysis gas, or “pygas,” which displaces oxygen.

Senegal says Lively was dead at the scene after apparently becoming overcome by fumes.

“As far as the preliminary investigation right now that’s what was relayed to me, that so far that the fumes in there, because of that type of gas or chemical displaces the oxygen levels, so that’s what actually caused his death,” said Senegal.

An autopsy was done by the Calcasieu coroner. A spokesperson says the death has been ruled accidental and the cause is pending toxicology results.

Senegal says part of the investigation is to talk to an employee who may have been with him. DEQ officials say Holeshot does have a permit to handle hazardous waste.