13 September 2017 6:27 AM, PDT | PEOPLE.com | See recent PEOPLE.com news »

A Texas man who nearly died after contracting a flesh-eating bacteria while out in Hurricane Harvey floodwaters is urging people now dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Irma to be extremely careful if they come into contact with floodwaters in their own towns.

“Make sure you do everything you can to protect yourself,” J.R. Atkins, 39, tells People. “If you’re not protected, don’t go out there.”

Some residents of Florida, South Carolina and Georgia are now experiencing flooding in the wake of Hurricane Irma and Atkins says, “floodwater carries a lot of bad things.”

Atkins, of Missouri City, »

- Hilary Shenfeld

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