If someone dies as a result of natural causes, violent crime, murder or suicide in a residence or place of business, the burden of clean up typically falls on the property owner. Obviously this is a traumatic task that few people are willing to undertake themselves. But why are the costs for cleanup of these scenes so expensive?
Biohazard cleanup companies like Bio Clean Services guarantee the scene will be restored to it’s original pre-incident state after the victim has been removed from the scene. There are several factors that determine the amount of time and services that our clients need. These factors are usually:
• How long was the death unattended
• Where it happened
• What type of scene it is (How it happened)
• What elements are in the scene where it occurred
If the body was in a decomposing state when removed, the cleanup is even more challenging because insects move into the body after death and may still be in the scene area after the body is removed by a coroner. It’s customary to also have body fluids, liquefied skin and organ tissues that have soaked into carpeting, flooring or other surfaces in contact with the scene. The most difficult task is generally remediation of the smell from the scene as the body will release ammonia gases that permeate these areas and can linger for months.
Our technicians are required to wear protective suits and respirators and utilize OSHA and EPA compliant chemicals to decontaminate these areas. Special equipment is used and all waste materials must be properly placed in safety sealed bags and disposed of. This usually requires obtaining permits from local officials with specific directives on how the waste is to be transported and disposed. Sometimes, medical-waste incinerators need to be used for this type of disposal.
Once the initial cleaning has been performed, it is necessary for Bio Clean Services to inspect every detail of these scenes utilizing special instruments and equipment to search for even the smallest trace elements of contamination (not seen with the visible eye). This inspection helps determine if the scene will need our construction crews to remove flooring, walls, insulation or other structural materials in effort to ensure proper cleaning for the safety of our clients.
As you can see from just a few short paragraphs, biohazard cleaning and decontamination of these types of scenes is more than a simple wash down with bleach. Obtaining permits, disposal charges, and construction costs are common factors that dictate what cleanup charges will be.
Depending on the circumstances, property owners may have coverage options through property insurance policies. In this regard, most companies will provide a service that handles all the paperwork for filing a claim. If insurance coverage is not available, they can also help their clients in contacting various charitable or religious organizations that can provide financial assistance.