Avondale police identify toxic chemical in fatal hazmat incident

Sep 5, 2021, 10:00 AM | Updated: 10:36 am
(Facebook Photo/Avondale Police Department)...
(Facebook Photo/Avondale Police Department)
(Facebook Photo/Avondale Police Department)

PHOENIX — Authorities have identified the toxic chemical at an Avondale commercial truck wash that led to the deaths of two men in August.

Police said two Danny’s Truck Wash employees who had been assigned to clean the inside of a liquid tanker truck died Aug. 29 following exposure to the corrosive chemical known as sodium hydrosulfide, which can cause death in higher exposures.

Officers responded to a call about two men being trapped inside the truck near 99th Street and Interstate 10 and requested assistance from the fire department after determining it was a hazmat situation, the Avondale Police Department said in a press release.

Authorities said the first man collapsed and became unconscious shortly after entering the tank. The second employee went inside the tanker to help and also became unconscious.

Both men were recovered and pronounced dead at the scene, police said. Their names have not been released.

The container was confirmed to be empty and on site for cleaning, police said.

Four firefighters were taken to the hospital and treated for heat-related ailments during the incident.

Fire crews from Avondale, Buckeye, Goodyear, Phoenix and Tolleson took part in the response.

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Avondale police identify toxic chemical in fatal hazmat incident