Cleaning up the horror-bag

When contractor (and contents pro) Tyler Pattat, wrote an article for cleaning & Remediation Magazine a few years ago, he told an amazing story, “The customer’s apartment had been flooded with category-three water from a toilet overflow in the unit directly above theirs. Almost all their clothes were contaminated…by the time they were referred to us a couple of days later, there was mold growing on some of the items that they had

thrown in plastic bags…It was a disgusting mess.”

He went on to explain that the insured wanted one item restored above all the others. It was a Coach© handbag (valued at hundreds of dollars). The handbag was covered in mold and (ahem) other unsavory things. But Tyler had a new cleaning method that he wanted to try out.

According to Wikipedia, “RLU” stands for “Relative light unit,” a calibration for measuring cleanliness
by determining the levels of Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP).

In the case of the “Handbag of Horror,” the ATP showed how much living matter was on the purse – a
reading of 2,460 RLU. According to Tyler, that meant, “…extremely contaminated.” And he added, “…
the bag looked as bad as it smelled.”

He was looking for a score of lower than 30 RLU (better than food grade). And, by golly, he got it! After processing, the new rating was 22 RLU – outstanding!

The insured said that her purse looked brand new. You may recall from an earlier edition of Contents Solutions, the article about another handbag (Coco Chanel©) that was in even worse shape and valued at $4,000 – restored for only $79.99.

The contents pros save money on virtually every job and often they save valuables that other companies
can’t. Adjusters and agents have come to recognize these valets valued allies.


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