LAX worker exposed to carbon dioxide fumes dies weeks later at hospital

A man who was working in an electrical utility room at Los Angeles International Airport when he and three co-workers were exposed to carbon dioxide fumes in October has died at a hospital, his family announced.

Cris Abraham, 36, died on Friday, his family said in a statement on a GoFundMe page that was established following the Oct. 31 incident.

"Unfortunately, due to his injuries, Cris passed away early Friday morning, 11-11-22," the statement said. "The entire family has been devastated by his loss. Your continued support is appreciated as the family adjusts to life without Cris. Please keep Tiffany and the kids in your thoughts and prayers."

The page had generated more than $34,000 in donations as of Tuesday morning.

At about 7 a.m. on Oct. 31, Abraham and three co-workers were sickened by carbon dioxide that was released from a fire-suppression system in an electrical utility room about 200 feet from Terminal 8, prompting an evacuation of the terminal and impacting some inbound flights.


Los Angeles Fire Department officials said the carbon dioxide was released as part of a fire-suppression system that was activated in the electrical room in which the four independent contractors were working.

Three of those workers managed to escape the room, but Abraham was overcome by the fumes.

"Finding the injured worker unresponsive and determining there were no other persons in peril, the firefighter and firefighter/paramedic carried the man across the room and up a short flight of stairs to the safer oxygen rich environment of the hallway, where they quickly confirmed him to be pulse-less and non-breathing," the LAFD reported.

"With the timely and skilled hands-on assistance of Los Angeles Police Department and Los Angeles Airport Police Officers assisting them with CPR, the LAFD Paramedic crew, soon joined by other LAFD responders, immediately began advanced life support measures at the scene and during the man's ambulance transport to an area hospital, where he arrived in critical condition, though with his pulse and spontaneous breathing restored," the LAFD reported.

The three other workers were medically evaluated by paramedics, and declined further treatment or ambulance transportation, the LAFD reported.

Abraham was hospitalized in a medically induced coma, his family said.

Officials notified Cal/OSHA for a formal investigation into the incident, the LAFD reported.

A GoFundMe created for the Abraham family has since raised more than $34,000.