Raw Sewage, Ebola & Germs OH MY!

When there is a Category 3 (think “raw sewage”) water damage job. Some contents restoration companies find that they spend much of their time separating total loss items and creating accurate lists.


However, there are cases in which Exclusively Contents Inc. actually saves valued hard and soft (textile) contents items from cashed-out.


Do you recall the Ebola case in Texas a few years ago? The contents cleaning team on that job hazmat trained. And although they eventually had to discard over 100 55-gallon metal drums filled with contaminated materials. They did manage to save the family’s computers, an old Bible, and some important papers.


But there are techniques and solutions that have enabled Exclusively Contents Inc. throughout North America to clean and restore massive amounts of “Black Water” (category 3) contents. Special decontamination compounds use to sanitize such items in special washing machines. And chlorine dioxide mixtures are rapidly becoming a contents professional’s new favorite product for anthrax and Ebola outbreaks.


Ultrasonics have actually proven – in hospitals – that this high-tech device can kill remarkably lethal contaminants. In an article from USA Today, it states, “Bleach, soap, sunlight or high temperatures will kill the Ebola virus. According to the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Machine-washing clothes or bedding contaminated with Ebola will destroy the virus, and it survives only a short time on solid surfaces that are in the sun or have dried.”


So, why are some Exclusively Contents Inc. so reluctant to take on a severe contamination job of this type? After all, they have hazmat suits and know how to use them.


Imagine that you are a parent of a newborn and the valet took your baby’s clothes to their best machines and decontaminated them – washed all the sewage particulates (or Ebola) out and sanitized the bacteria. How safe would you feel, putting those same clothes on your child?


The same question asked about how you feel about your own saturated clothing. Or even the cups, bowls, and eating utensils that exposed to human waste, mold, and strong bacteria.

Contamination can come in many “Flavors”

Exclusively Contents Inc. can clean and restore huge amounts of valued items – even under these remarkable conditions — but will the insured accept them as being in pre-loss condition? And will their agent or adjuster be able to convince them that they are safe?

For what it is worth, a nurse, who was exposed to Ebola during the Texas case, had her belongings “total loss.” Including her new engagement ring. The crew that destroyed it was a “decontamination” team. Not the trained contents restoration personnel who were originally called in on the Ebola case.


When Zales (a well-known jewelry store) heared about what happened to her ring, they gave her a new one. But not every insurance company, or insured, has that sort of luck. That is why Exclusively Contents Inc. is the first call to make when there are treasures items at stake.





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