Republic Services trash collection worker burned by sulfuric acid speaks out

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LAFAYETTE PARISH, La. (KLFY) – A worker for Republic Services was seriously injured earlier this week. He suffered third degree burns after coming into contact with sulfuric acid that leaked from a trash container.

“Everything happened so fast. It was like, call 911. Get help now. It was really that bad,” said Jerrith Martin.

Martin works for the trash collection company. He was dumping a residential container recently, that contained a bag with sulfuric acid inside. It leaked out, ate through his gloves, and covered his arm from his wrist to elbow.

“Man the pain was really bad. I don’t wish that pain on anybody,” said Martin.

This happened at a trash facility in Scott on Tuesday, September 7th. The Scott Fire Department and the Lafayette Fire Department Hazardous Materials Team took care of it. They wore protective suits, and checked out the trash bin for other hazardous materials.

“This isn’t the first time I ran across chemicals. Sometimes people put gasoline or batteries in the containers,” said Martin.

Martin urges people to put the right things in the garbage, and get rid of hazardous materials properly.

“All I can say is to dispose of it the correct way, so no one gets hurt,” said Martin.

Martin is being treated at Our Lady of Lourdes in Lafayette. He’s already had one surgery. He will have another surgery on Monday.

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