NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A helium canister exploded in the back of a sanitation truck Friday morning in Brooklyn.

It happened around 6:40 a.m. near 12th Street and Seventh Avenue in Park Slope.

The force of the blast knocked over worker David Yen.

The 13-year veteran was taken to the hospital with shrapnel wounds to his eye, neck, chest and shoulder.

“New Yorkers should consider the safety of the dedicated men and women of the Department of Sanitation, who are serving the public on our streets every day,” Harry Nespoli, Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association president, said in a statement. “Please don’t place dangerous chemicals or other items in household trash.”