6 Things Y’all Need To Know About Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup

Have you thought about adding trauma and crime scene clean to your business?  These services are an invaluable resource to families in your service area. It’s a gruesome task and probably not something a person would ever think about — until the need arises. Your company could essentially be able to meet that need in a big way.

 Here are some things that y’all should consider first though.

Table of Contents

Do you have the right people for the job?

Compassion is the key!  Having a restorer that can mend not only the structure, but more importantly, help to mend the family members still dealing with this tragedy.  Have a heart man! Those big, bad, mean techs might not be right for the job.  

Do you know the rules for Crime Scene Cleanup?

Person in PPE at a Crime Scene

IICRC ANSI S540 Standard for Trauma & Crime Scene cleanup provides the principles and foundation for understanding the proper remediation practices. 

There’s also those pesky governmental regulations that you gotta worry about – including the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standards.  These standards dictate how to handle biohazard materials.

The certification you want is the IICRC TCST and it’s based on the ANSI S540 Standard. This course is offered online as a livestream course, but I highly recommend the hands-on course.  You’re gonna get way more out of cleaning up pigs blood and brains in a mock crime scene than just hearing about it on a zoom call! But that’s just my opinion

Book your IICRC TCST In-Person Course here!

How Do You Charge for Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup?

Tablet showing invoice

Money shouldn’t be the main thing you think about when you’re doing trauma work. But… you are running a business. So here’s something else to think about.

Crime scene cleanup rates can range anywhere from $150 upwards to $600 per hour and are normally billed by the hour. The price will depend on the required cleaning specifications, scope of work, complexity of the cleanup and how long it will take to bring the site back to its original pre-incident condition.

Costs can include transportation, transport permits, medical/biohazard waste disposal, supplies, chemicals, and equipment. There isn’t one right billing program to use for trauma and crime scene cleaning. You can use any program you want. A program like Xactimate has specific categories for trauma and crime scene cleanup (TCR). There you’ll find cleaning items, disinfecting line items, equipment line items, etc. But you can use time and material billing or even just use your invoicing software to create a bill.

Want to learn more about Xactimate. Take our Estimating and Negotiating class!

Are Your Techs Physically Prepared?

Girl wearing PPE suit and Full Face Respirator

I don’t mean are they strong enough. I’m sure they are. I mean how will you keep them healthy. When dealing with trauma and crime scenes, you may be dealing with hazardous materials. Do your guys have the proper PPE? Do they know how to put it on and take it off (yeah I know it’s called don and doff… but who cares) without getting contamination on themselves? Do they know how to properly set up containment and decon chambers so they don’t cross contaminate unaffected areas? And do they know the process OSHA provides to clean their respirators when they’re done?

Oh they know all that?!?!? Well are you billing for all that properly? Oh now I got your attention…. 

Find out at our next Livestream IICRC Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup Course

Are Your Techs Prepared Mentally?

So your guys love the idea of seeing blood and guts. They see it on video games and movies, so they think they’re ready to see it in real life. That’s not how it works. In real life, there are consequences to this job. Including mental and emotional stress. Encountering crying family members, knowing a traumatic event has been committed and potentially seeing blood or body parts is no joke. So do you have something in place to deal with this?

This article is on “Dealing with the Stress of Recovering Dead Bodies”. It is an article about humanitarian and recovery operations. But it has some good tips for our industry. Planning for the PTSD, emotional strain and the stress of carrying another family’s pain is not weak. It is something you need to do as a business owner.

What State Laws do You Need to Know When Doing Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup?

Georgia was the first state to regulate crime scene cleanup. (Y’all need to catch up). The regulation was a long and arduous process headed by Gordy Powell and Doug Cunningham. They are great sources of information for this industry. (Ps. You gotta meet Miranda Lambert!) Regulation may be coming to your state sooner or later. This isn’t a bad thing! The families affected by tragedy do need some protection from the predators (not that you would ever be considered a predator). So be on the lookout for State laws affecting this industry.

While your state may not have regulations. That doesn’t mean there aren’t federal laws that need to be followed. What are the OSHA standards for crime scene cleanup? You should look at the OSHA 1910.1030 on Bloodborne Pathogens as well as a few other standards.

If you have questions regarding lobbying and government relations and advocacy, you can reach out to Robbie Bradshaw, Director of Government Relations and Advocacy for the IICRC. His email address is GovernmentRelations@iicrc.org

For members of the Restoration Industry Association. They also have an Advocacy and Government Affairs team. View their website here.

Meredith Truitt has been the acting queen of Reets Drying Academy for over 13+ years now.  Meredith brings more than 20 years of experience in sales, customer service and marketing to Reets Drying Academy. She is also our resident southern belle, so she knows a thing or two about southern hospitality.  But Meredith is not just a pretty face and a sweet southern drawl she is also IICRC Certified in WRT, ASD, TCST, FSRT, OCT, HST and working towards getting her Master Water Certification track through the IICRC!  Call Meredith for more information about the courses that we offer here at Reets Drying Academy Today!


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