DuPont Plant Explosion in Texas Shines Spotlight on Industrial Safety Issues


In mid-November, a chemical explosion occurred at a DuPont plant in Laporte, Texas. Though the blast is still under investigation, multiple reports confirm four workers killed with another hospitalized. DuPont is the third largest chemical company based on market capitalization, with state-of-the-art facilities, accident prevention and recovery protocols. Yet the incident is a sobering reminder that the best laid plans must be continually evaluated and updated.

In the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, our hearts go out to the victims and their families. According to an AFP report, the explosion was triggered by a "two-hour leak of methyl mercaptan, also known as methanethiol…The chemical is commonly used to give a scent to natural gas for safety reasons." A DuPont spokesman denied that the leak posed any danger to the larger Laporte community.

As DuPont leadership searches for the cause of the leak and commences cleanup operations, it's certain the company will revisit its safety programs as well as disaster management planning and recovery efforts. The Risk Services Team at HUB International strongly advocates that businesses of all sizes take every available opportunity to do the same.

Our experts have put together a variety of resources to help companies do all they can to avoid being the next DuPont. No matter the industry, business and personnel risks must be managed, and workplace safety standards maintained. The following offer more information and best practices surrounding safety documentation, accountability and continuing education:

And, download HUB's white paper, Preparing for the Unexpected: Disaster Management Planning for Businesses. Although disasters can't be avoided, their impact can be mitigated by planning ahead.

Protect your business, and help it recover from crisis more efficiently, with the expert assistance of HUB's Risk Consulting team.