As the owner of a commercial business property, it’s important to be aware of all types of hidden dangers. While something like water damage can be very tangible and easy to report, other issues, such as biohazardous waste, can be less obvious. As a result, this can put your employees, your guests, and anyone who enters your property at risk. The solution is to hire professional biohazard and hazmat cleaning and restoration services. Professional intervention with biohazard cleanup is almost always necessary when biohazards are present.
These hazards can pose both short- and long-term health issues ranging from cold-like symptoms to hospitalization. Furthermore, there are many types of biohazards, so being prepared is critical. Biohazards also pose a number of risks to your business’ structure. With damage control and finances being a major component of running a successful enterprise, handling hazardous threats fast is essential.
It is important to first understand what biohazards are and where they come from. Learning about some of the most common hazards to occur on commercial properties can help you recognize threats before they escalate. It is a good idea to learn a little about the biohazard cleaning and restoration process as well as PPE gear. PPE is an essential component of keeping yourself and those who enter your property safe.
Finally, learning about our services at PNW Restoration can help you make an informed choice for all your hazmat cleaning needs.
What Does PNW Restoration Do?
At PNW Restoration, our team has over a decade of experience in the biohazard and hazmat cleaning industry. We know how to handle properties of all scopes and sizes. Part of our mission is to provide our community with high-quality hazmat, biohazard, and decontamination cleaning services. We practice integrity, discretion, and exceptional customer service in everything we do.
If biohazards are present at your place of business, now is the time to act. We invite you to learn more about our services by visiting our website today.
Biohazards: A Crash Course
Before you can safeguard your business against biohazardous threats, you need to understand the basics. What is a biohazard, and why is it so dangerous to a place of business?
A biohazard can be defined as any biological organism or substance that might pose a threat to another living being. “Biohazard” is a shortened term from the words “biological hazard,” and the key here is that it must be a biological organism. Therefore, chemical threats, while dangerous to your place of business, are not considered biohazards and will require a different restoration/cleaning process.
Here’s What You Need to Know
There are numerous ways to classify and categorize biological hazards. Sometimes they are categorized broadly by their source or by the general type of hazard, such as a bacteria, virus, mold, or fungi. However, each of these categories can be further divided into other classifications relating to hazard level, species, and prevalence. Furthermore, biohazards can all come from different sources, rely on different factors to thrive, pose unique threats, and spread from area to area. Outbreaks can occur when viruses or bacteria spread illness from one individual to another.
Biohazards are dangerous for many reasons, and we will break down some of those threats later on. However, it’s important to note that the biggest concern with biological hazards is the threat they might pose to your place of business. Since biohazards could involve dangerous or even deadly viruses or bacteria, protecting your property is essential.
Keeping Things Safe
Your business includes yourself, employees and staff, maintenance individuals, guests, and anyone else who might enter your property. This is your responsibility as a business owner, and biohazards can quickly throw that for a loop. As a result, this means you might have to temporarily close your business while the issue is remediated. Therefore, the threat biohazard poses is far deeper than just health issues. It can extend to financial issues, structural problems, and downtime for employees who rely on a consistent paycheck.
For all of these reasons, it’s important to take biohazard containment, cleanup, and restoration seriously. Our team at PNW Restoration can help with biohazard cleanup services.
Hazards and Where They Come from on Commercial Properties
Since there are many ways to categorize biohazards, sometimes the easiest way to discuss them is based on their source. Here are some of the most common and potentially dangerous threats to business properties.
Biohazard Cleanup for Human Waste and Urine
Human waste and urine can easily occur on a commercial property. While the source is often contained in a bathroom facility, sometimes it can extend beyond if plumbing issues are prevalent. In these cases, the entire property could be considered a biohazard zone that requires a professional cleaning team. Biohazard cleanup ensures that the waste itself is cleaned up, as well as any remaining bacteria or viruses that could be transmitted through human waste.
Outbreak of Illness/Microbiological (Bacteria or Viral)
Outbreaks of bacterial or viral infections can spread quickly throughout your property. The problem with these outbreaks is that different illnesses spread in different ways. Some are airborne, some transferred only through direct human contact, and others spread via surfaces. As a result, comprehensive disinfection and sanitation measures from a biohazard cleanup team are required to eliminate microbial outbreaks. Examples include a major flu outbreak, Covid-19, and even the common cold.
SHARPS and other medical waste can also pose a hazard at your business property. Most commonly, these occur in medical settings such as medical offices, hospitals, or clinics. However, you could come across a discarded needle anywhere, and this is a SHARP hazard. Knowing how to properly dispose of these items, such as in a designated SHARP biohazard waste container, is critical.
However, if the medical waste includes blood, human organs, or other medical waste, then it’s best to call in the professionals. Our team at PNW Restoration can handle all types of medical and SHARPS waste to ensure your business property is safe from biological threats.
Biohazard Cleanup for Bloodborne Pathogens
As we mentioned above, blood is a biohazard in and of itself. Blood can carry pathogens known as bloodborne pathogens which can be transmitted to healthy individuals and cause illness. Sometimes an infected person does not even know they are sick. As a result, if they were to receive a laceration, even a minor one, they could unwittingly pass this pathogen on to another person. Therefore, blood spills of any degree should be treated as a biohazard and handled by professional biohazard cleanup technicians.
Molds and Mildews
Mold is another biohazard that occurs naturally. However, many molds can lead to serious illness, hospitalization, and even death with prolonged exposure. That is why tackling mold problems in your place of business is essential. While mold can be present at any time, it’s good to keep an eye out after recent water damage. Mold and damp, humid regions are more common after water issues and in the warmer months of the year.
Water damage can also cause direct contamination. When water damage occurs, for example from a burst pipe, the water inside the pipe is rarely considered clean. In the water, all types of particles from mold spores to bacteria and viruses could be lurking. If this water comes into contact with people or belongings, they could be contaminated. After water damage at your place of business, it is wise to assess the risk for biohazards with local professionals. Taking action before issues have a chance to cause illness is the best course of action.
Finally, animals can also cause hazards both inside and outside your property. Vermin of any kind, from ants to mice and rats, can carry pathogens. Outside, their waste can pose hazards. They could contaminate food supplies and water lines on your property. If you have issues with vermin, it can be wise to call an exterminator. However, this won’t eliminate the hazards that have already been caused by the animals. Therefore, you will also need biohazard cleanup and restoration services.
Introduction to Biohazard and Hazmat Cleaning Services
Commercial biohazard cleanup services can help if any of the aforementioned hazards are present on your business property. They work to eliminate the physical hazards present if it’s still present. Examples might include removing soiled furniture or a blood-soaked pile of clothes. In some cases, this step has already been achieved, such as when you call an exterminator to get rid of pesky animals.
After physical hazards have been removed, cleaning and disinfection begin. This is when your team will clean from top to bottom every area of the affected property. The sterilization and disinfection measures ensure that there are no remaining hazards or pathogens present.
In some cases, a third and even a fourth procedure could be needed, including restoration efforts, replacement of belongings, individual restoration of certain items, or remodeling. These often occur in more extreme cases, but it’s good to be aware of the possible extent of biohazard damage. We will go over our PNW Restoration biohazard cleanup process in more depth below, but generally the process is similar for certified and OSHA-regulated biohazard cleaning companies.
Hazmat and PPE Gear for Biohazard Cleanup
Personal protective equipment, or PPE, is a critical aspect of biohazard cleanup and restoration. If you have hazards present on your property, then it’s wise to wear some form of PPE while entering. If you do not have this equipment, do not enter unless absolutely necessary
Your team of professional hazmat cleaning technicians will always wear PPE while on your property. Proper wearing and removal of this equipment is part of the containment aspect of biohazard cleaning. Containment is critical to stop the spread of potential hazards from one area to the next. For example, someone cleaning up a biohazard site might change their gloves when entering another area of your property. Furthermore, it is required to properly remove these garments and dispose of them in sealed bags, because improper disposal can contaminate another region.
Personal protective equipment can vary depending on the nature of a biohazard scene cleanup. However, most of the time it consists of gloves, a mask (sometimes a strong respirator mask), boot coverings or specialized footwear, goggles, and a hazmat suit. A hazmat suit is a lightweight but airtight covering that goes over regular clothing to protect the individual from biohazardous waste.
PNW Restoration Business Biohazard Cleaning Services
At PNW Restoration, we follow a step-by-step process for all of our biohazard services. This ensures that we do not miss essential steps that could cause biohazardous contamination issues or illness.
Consultation & Inspection
First, we begin with a consultation, usually over the phone, to gauge what the source of contamination is. This helps us prepare better for the next step: a property inspection where we come up with a unique action plan for your property. While the cleaning and disinfection measures remain the same, it is helpful to know what areas need to be cleaned and any additional efforts that could be required.
Biohazard Cleanup & Removal
Next, we begin the physical cleanup process. We will remove any personal belongings or items that have been ruined by biohazardous contamination. In some cases, personal belongings can be salvaged using off-site remediation measures. However, we are careful to discard and document anything that cannot be salvaged.
Once this has been achieved, we will contain the area, sealing it off from other regions as needed.
Then, we begin the tear-out process if it’s required. Some scenes are minor, and the hazard has not posed enough of a threat to surfaces at your place of business that they need to be replaced. In these cases, no tear-out will be required. After tear-out, we begin cleaning, using specialized industrial cleaners that tackle biohazards.
Sterilization & Disinfection Measures in Biohazard Cleanup
Cleaning is not enough to secure an area from previous biohazards. Sterilization and disinfection measures are also required to make sure all hazards are removed and eliminated permanently. Therefore, we follow up our cleanup process with detailed sterilization measures to leave your property fully disinfected. This removes the threat of returning contaminants, viruses, bacteria, and other hazards.
If restoration efforts are required due to damaged surfaces, tear-outs and deeper biohazardous contamination, we will help initiate these services at this time. Not all properties will require these measures.
Of course, PNW Restoration takes our services seriously, so much so that we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Before we leave your property, we also conduct a final inspection to ensure there are no remaining threats or issues that need to be handled. If you are in the process of remodeling or restoration due to more extreme contaminations, we make sure you have the right resources in place to help you.
Our job is not finished until we are sure your property is safe to re-enter and biohazard cleanup is complete. Let us help you see for yourself what our service can do for you when it comes to biohazard cleanup.
Contact PNW Restoration for Biohazard Cleanup
Biohazards are any biological organism that might pose a threat to another biological being. There are many types of biohazards that occur naturally, and others that can occur due to accidents or traumatic incidents. Being prepared for biohazards is critical. It is wise for everyone to be aware of these threats and what to do in their aftermath. Our website has information on what to do in case of a biohazard.
Biohazards can be caused by a number of factors including human waste, SHARPS/medical waste, animals, molds or mildew, recent water contamination, and bloodborne pathogens. Knowing these causes is not enough to protect you, your customers, your employees, and other individuals who might come into contact with these threats. Taking action with professional help is critical because professionals have the right gear and training to handle the job. PPE is important to wear when entering any biohazard zone. PPE might include hazmat suits, gloves, protective footwear, goggles, masks, and/or respirators.
A proper OSHA-regulated biohazard cleanup team will use PPE and specialized equipment. They will begin with an inspection, followed by hazardous materials removal, cleaning, sterilization, restoration efforts, and a final inspection. Our team at PNW Restoration promises high-quality service that removes all hazards from your business property.
Living with biohazards at your place of business can spell out major health ramifications, financial concerns due to closing your doors temporarily, and possibly a bad reputation. Handling these issues fast is critical. Don’t wait! Contact our team at PNW Restoration now to learn more and begin your free consultation process. You can also visit our website for insights into navigating biohazard cleanup at your business.