How Are Crime Scenes Cleaned?
Because of the high level of danger and distress associated with crime scene cleaning, this is a task that’s best left to a professional contractor rather than friends or family. Professional contractors adhere to strict health and safety rules, are thoroughly trained, and have access to the necessary PPE (Personal Protective Equipment).
Professional contractors such as Slime and Grime have rigorous procedures in place that begin as soon as they are contacted by the authorities, landlord, or family to clean up a crime scene.
After the police have collected evidence, the crime scene can be cleaned. It’s essential that this process is initiated rapidly, as crime scenes can quickly collect dangerous pathogens or bacteria that can be hazardous to human health.
Slime and Grime splits our crime scene cleaning process into three distinct stages:
Cleaning of the area and removal of dangerous objects
Disinfection of the crime scene and rigorous ATP testing
Deodorisation of the crime scene
Because of the potential for hazardous biochemicals, body fluids and dangerous objects, it’s essential that these stages are adhered to effectively by the crime scene cleaning team. Let’s take a look at the stages in more detail to see why each step is important.
Stage 1: Cleaning
Upon arrival at the crime scene, the team at Slime and Grime makes a professional assessment of the area. The area in question should already be cordoned off, but if not the team ensures that the crime scene is again isolated as they get to work.
The first stage is to identify the best approach to cleaning, disinfecting and deodorising the affected areas. Every crime scene is different, but Slime and Grime is experienced in working through a diverse range of scenarios. The intended goal of a crime scene clean up is to not only make the area safe but to return the area to its pre-crime levels of hygiene and cleanliness.
The team identifies dangerous objects and biohazards, which first need to be disposed of to make the area safe for them to work in. Any threats to human health are removed safely and sent for disposal. This includes needles, broken glass, and other dangerous objects. This is a priority, because these dangerous items can hold hazardous diseases such as HIV or Hepatitis, while also posing a physical threat to our team as they work.
Once the area has been made safe from objects that could cause injury, the team sets to work cleaning the site. The focus is first on biohazards, which have the potential to cause infection. Biohazards such as blood and fluids are cleaned up, while the rest of the area is given a thorough cleaning too.
Stage 2: Disinfection
After the initial clean up has been completed, the team moves onto the disinfection stage. This is the most essential stage in terms of hygiene. While people might often be tempted to simply try and wash blood stains away, crime scene cleaning actually requires much more rigorous cleaning.
Many blood-borne pathogens are able to survive outside of the human body for several days. This includes dangerous pathogens such as Hepatitis, which can survive for as long as a week. For health and safety, it’s imperative that surfaces are disinfected – and household products such as bleach aren’t going to do the job.
The team at Slime and Grime has access to a range of industrial chemicals, disinfectants and equipment that can safely sterilize affected areas. We also know the best methods for sterilization and can perform testing to ensure that affected areas are completely clean from pathogens.
Stage 3: Deodorisation
The third essential stage of crime scene cleaning is deodorisation. Unfortunately, crime scenes often involve a lot of foul odours that can disrupt any return to normality, be it a home or workplace.
Our team works to remove any malignant odours and smells from the area, but the extent of the operation depends on the extent of the odours. Some crime scenes may only require a brisk deodorisation, while others can require the application of techniques such as thermo fogging or sealing in order to remove powerful odours.
Which Chemicals Are Used to Clean Crime Scenes?
Slime and Grime uses a wide variety of chemicals and equipment in order to ensure that crime scene cleaning is carried out professionally and thoroughly.
These chemicals include industrial-grade and hospital-grade disinfectants, including industrial bleach and peroxide. Our team also employs anti-microbial solutions for disinfection and deodorisation, along with enzyme solutions to break down bloodstains and bodily fluids.
All chemicals are handled and applied using extensive PPE to protect our staff, but rest assured that the affected areas are safe for human habitation once the disinfection period has ended.
Before a crime scene is signed off as clean, our team carries out ATP testing (adenosine triphosphate fluorescence testing). ATP testing is used to test sanitation and is industry recognised and proven to measure levels of infection.
ATP devices are used to measure the levels of adenosine triphosphate fluorescence that are present in the cleaned areas. The level must be zero for the area to be cleared as disinfected. The team only declares crime scene cleaning to be complete when all levels in the affected areas are zero.
Why Professionals Are Needed to Clean Crime Scenes
Professionals are essential when it comes to crime scene cleaning. The police, emergency services and other authorities are not responsible for crime scene cleaning, so private landlords, business owners or friends and family need to organise the crime scene clean up.
That’s where contractors such as Slime and Grime have an important role to play cleaning crime scenes. Without the specialist knowledge and equipment of our professional crime scene cleaning team, it’s impossible to achieve a safe level of disinfection and hygiene. Household equipment and chemicals aren’t up to the job, and the trauma and distress can often prove overpowering. It’s always in your best interest to call in the professionals.