1 dead, 2 critically injured in workplace accident

A man died and two others were critically injured today when they apparently were overcome by fumes while cleaning a large tank at a business north of Atwater Village, authorities said.

Firefighters were sent to 4501 W. Colorado Blvd. at about 4 a.m., Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department said. The business is affiliated with Baxter Healthcare Corp., Humphrey said.

One of the men had no heart rate and was not breathing initially but firefighter-paramedics were able to restore his pulse, Erik Scott of the LAFD said.

All three were hospitalized. Los Angeles police advised the fire department that one man had died, Humphrey said. His name was withheld, pending notification of relatives.

The men were cleaning the inside of a five-foot-tall cylindrical tank with a 4-foot diameter, Humphrey said. The tank has a 24-inch diameter opening at the top, through which the had men entered the tank to clean it. When firefighters arrived, two were inside and one was partially inside, Humphrey said.

Firefighters pulled all three men from the "confined space" and brought them outside, Humphrey said.

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