OCEAN CITY — A foreign J-1 student trapped in a trash compactor at a north-end hotel last Saturday night suffered a broken pelvis and is on the mend, but will likely require multiple surgeries.
Around 5 p.m. last Friday, Ocean City emergency services responded to a reported individual trapped in a commercial trash compactor at the Carousel Hotel on 118th Street. First-responders found the victim, Petr Konig from the Czech Republic, a seasonal worker at the hotel in Ocean City on a J-1 work-travel visa, stuck in the trash compactor from the waist down.
Emergency crews extricated Konig from the trash compactor and the victim was transported to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma with critical injuries below the waist. According to reliable sources, Konig had been looking for his shoes and was told by a co-worker that they had been inadvertently thrown away.
Konig reportedly went to the trash compactor to attempt to retrieve his shoes and entered the machine confident that it was off and not in an operating position. However, as it turns out, the equipment is designed to trigger into the operating position when the amount of trash or other material deposited in it reaches a certain weight. In this case, the weight of the young student-worker triggered the compactor, trapping him below the waist.
Konig suffered a broken pelvis and other injuries and will require multiple surgeries. In the days following the accident, a Go Fund Me page was set up on behalf of Konig to help with medical and other expenses and had nearly reached the halfway mark of its stated $5,000 goal in just one day this week. While he is far from home, Konig does have a vast support network locally through co-workers, friends and a local church. The fundraising site can be found at https://www.gofundme.com/petrs-medical-expenses.