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Worker dies after Port of Tampa accident

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Tampa Police say one of seven workers hospitalized last night after an accident at the Port of Tampa has died.

33-year-old Jesus Jimenez died at Tampa General Hospital after inhaling fumes while cleaning a sewer pipe.  Last night, at 7:00 PM, Jimenez and other employees of Lanzo Lining Inc. were cleaning a sewer pipe at the Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant.  Two workers inside the pipe were overcome by hydrogen sulfide fumes.  Their co-workers tried to help them, but were also overcome by the fumes.

The seven workers were taken to Tampa General Hospital, where Jimenez died.  A second worker remains hospitalized, but in good condition.

Six Tampa firefighters were also affected by the fumes.  They were treated at TGH and released.

The Port Authority issued a statement Thursday evening regarding the incident, which read in part:

"Thursday's industrial accident at the City of Tampa Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater treatment plant at the Port of Tampa has sadly claimed a life.

The accident happened early Thursday evening and involved seven employees of Lanzo Lining Inc.  All seven workers were taken to the hospital after being overcome by fumes inside a sewer pipe. Unfortunately, Jesus Jimenez died from inhalation.  We are very saddened to hear of the death of Mr. Jimenez and our thoughts and prayers are with the Jimenez family during this difficult time."

Tampa Police are working with Occupational Safety and Health Administration officials to determine the source of the fumes, and assess safety concerns. 

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