ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) — A sanitation worker’s routine trash pickup in South Carolina turned into an investigation when he heard screaming coming from the compactor.
A city worker collecting trash from outside an elementary school Monday morning found a woman inside the garbage truck’s compactor, The Rock Hill Herald reported.
Rock Hill police said the man activated the compactor, heard screams and stopped. Police Lt. Michael Chavis said the woman freed herself from the compactor and fled on foot.
“Clearly this was a dangerous situation that could have ended badly,” Chavis said.
It’s unclear if the woman was injured. Chavis said it’s also unclear if the woman was in the dumpster that was emptied in the truck or if she was already in the compactor.
As of Monday afternoon, the woman had not been found, Chavis said.
Rock Hill city spokesperson Katie Quinn said the woman may have been looking for shelter to get out of the stormy weather Sunday night but it is against city law to go through city-owned waste receptacles.
“There are dangers because of what may be in the dumpster, or in a situation such as this,” Quinn said. “People need to be aware that it is against city code and not safe.”
The investigation is ongoing.