Man suffers chemical burns in work accident

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A bizarre call that started as a possible explosion, but ended with one man rushed to the hospital.

The first call that came in was for an explosion at Industrial Drive near Sycamore in Knoxville. That turned out to not be true, but the United DMS building was evacuated.

The company recycles silver from film, like X-rays.

Local 8 News arrived right as the ambulance was pulling out to take the victim to UT.

The Knoxville Fire Department says while working, he was exposed to a combination of sodium hydroxide and lime. It's comparable to battery acid.

"It'll burn your skin in a short time of exposure. He was exposed to this when we got here on scene, they had already put him in the shower to try and rinse some of that off, which is the process for this to try and get where you've been exposed, get that off the skin as soon as possible," said Capt. DJ Corcoran, with the Knoxville Fire Department.

The victim suffered second and third degree chemical burns from his shoulders down.

Captain Corcoran said they had no idea at this time, but United DMS will investigate what happened.

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