The terms crime scene cleanup and trauma scene cleanup are most often associated with the cleaning of human remains, fluids or tissues at the scene of a homicide, suicide or unattended death. These are differentiated from regular types of cleaning jobs due to both the potentially hazardous nature of the cleanup and the gruesomeness of the scene. Blood is one of the hazardous substances that are difficult to clean up. If you need blood clean up in your car, home, or workplace, it is recommended to not ever handle it yourself. A trained decontamination specialist should do blood clean ups as blood is considered to be a biohazard material. It is necessary to know the risk factors involved with the clean up of blood and bodily fluids. In the case where you must do some of the cleaning prior to a professional coming to help you, these are some simple biohazard cleanup procedures to follow:
1. Protect Yourself
Blood stains are difficult to remove as they can be deadly. Microorganisms present in human blood and other bodily fluids are the blood-borne pathogens. The HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C are the most common, dangerous diseases spread by blood-borne pathogens. The body’s lack of natural ability to fight disease is the after effect of HIV, and the HIV can be carried for years before symptoms of illness and then later turns to AIDS.
The right method to protect yourself is to follow the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogen rules. These guidelines protect anyone involved with biohazard and blood cleaning tasks. They detail the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and blood cleaning procedures. If worn correctly (by following the guidelines and manufacturer suggestions), PPE will significantly reduce the chances of catching any diseases or illnesses. As you can see by this statement, PPE does not guarantee protection while performing blood cleaning, but it does offer the most significant safety net for individuals to limit their exposure to bloodborne pathogens.
Use a steel brush to remove the blood stain as it loosens stain if the blood stain is dried up. By doing so, the surface deposit is being removed.
Blot with an absorbent cloth being very careful not to spread the stain. Place a small amount of a mild detergent on the stain and work it in with a brush starting from the outside and working inward.
4. Clean Twice
Place a small amount of ammonia and let it sit for a few minutes to break down the stain. Spittle is also recommended here and can be used in the place of ammonia. Blot again with a dry, clean, white cloth.
5. Continue Cleaning
Repeat the procedure to an extent there are no signs of blood transferred onto the white cloth or white paper towels. When no transfer is evident, blot the rest of the excess water.
6. Dry the Area
To dry the area, you can place a cloth or a layer of paper towels directly on the spot. Then place something substantial on it, such as a stack of books to let it soak up the remaining water. Repeat with a dry cloth or dry paper towels until the spot is completely dry.
As you can see, cleaning up blood after a small accident or in the aftermath of a terrible event can be tough and cause significant risk to human health. It is vital that anyone is attempting to perform any blood cleaning follow these biohazard cleanup procedures to ensure that they are doing it correctly and safely.