workers were hospitalised after a gas leak which occured... the workers were / had been...

Leafka

Senior Member
Polish
Hi,

I'm writing about a gas leak at a company facility:

As reported by the media, five workers were hospitalised after a gas leak which occurred at a company terminal in Norway. Allegedly, the workers were / had been exposed to the poisonous hydrogen sulfide gas.

I cannot decide which tense to use. When I look at the 'five workers were hospitalised' part of the sentence, I choose had been; when I focus at 'after a gas leak which occurred at a company terminal in Norway', I'm not so sure.
 
  • Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    You're right, either tense would be fine. That being the case, I would choose the simpler tense (the past), since the order of events is blindingly obvious from the context.
     
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