Helpful insights from Scene Clean, whose experts routinely clean up infectious locations
As we stock up on cleaning and sanitizing supplies to lower the risk of coronavirus infection, Minnesota’s largest biohazard clean-up company, Scene Clean, is offering free advice for the best way to use the products at our disposal.
“To understand how to best clean your home and office, it’s important to understand the terms you see on labels,” explains Scene Clean President and Founder Nate Berg. Scene Clean, a 24/7 business founded in 2012, knows how to protect its employees and the public from infectious germs. It is the only company in Minnesota to be certified by the American Bio Recovery Association.
Berg provides the following information, as defined by the CDC:
- Cleaning: “Cleaning removes germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces or objects. Cleaning works by using soap (or detergent) and water to physically remove germs (biofilms) from surfaces. This process does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and reduces the workload of the disinfectant, enabling the disinfectant to be more effective.”
- Disinfecting: “Disinfecting kills germs on surfaces or objects. Disinfecting works by using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces or objects. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection. Disinfection professionals today are generally concerned with what percentage of a given germ is killed by a particular process or disinfectant,” he states.
“The highest percentage that is generally used is 99.9999%. Today’s hospital standards are 99.99%. Look for products that are 99.99% or more. Each 9 is considered “a log”; your target should be a 4-6 log product (99.99-99.9999). If you use a disinfectant/cleaner combination product, you must still clean and disinfect as a two-part process. The first pass would be the cleaning step followed by a second pass as the disinfection. Change towels or paper towels often. Try to use different sides with each wipe.”
- Sanitizing: “Sanitizing lowers the number of germs on surfaces or objects to a lesser degree than disinfecting. Typical sanitizing products are 2-3 log (99-99.9%).”
- Dwell time. “Whether you are using a disinfectant or a sanitizing product, be sure to follow the label’s dwell time. A dwell time is the required time any product needs to remain wet for the product to actually kill the germs. If a product says 10 minutes, then it needs to remain wet for 10 minutes. Do not force it to dry early or even worse, dry the product with a towel. Keep it wet and let it air dry.”
How to clean and disinfect for maximum results
Berg offers this advice for how to use cleaning products and avoid contamination.
- Buy the most effective products. “The best products to use are the disinfectants listed by the EPA as meeting the criteria for COVID-19. Be sure to read the label and visit the EPA’s website to verify the organism you want to kill is specifically listed under the product’s “kill claims.” Not all disinfectants are designed to kill all microorganisms.”
- Follow instructions on the label. “The CDC has cleaning procedures readily available. The most important thing to remember when using a disinfectant, or wipe in particular, is to follow the label instructions and allow for enough dwell time. In other words, let the product sit before wiping it up.”
- Use products specific to the characteristics of what you’re cleaning. “If you’re cleaning a porous surface, for example, you may need a different product than what you might use for a nonporous surface such as a doorknob or countertop.”
- Clean first and then disinfect. “Pay close attention to high/common touch points such as front door knobs, the refrigerator handle and microwave panel, and the TV remote. People forget about things like utensils and dinnerware; make sure they’re being cleaned properly. Toilet handles, car interiors, and at-home computers are often missed.”
- If possible, do not reuse supplies. “Use clean and disposable products.”
- Wear personal protective equipment if applicable. “Especially if someone in your home is sick, you’ll want to wear disposable gloves while cleaning and throw them away immediately afterward. Remember, do not touch your face while still wearing the gloves. They may be contaminated.”
- Wash your hands after cleaning. “Once you have finished cleaning and disinfecting, be sure to wash your hands with warm, soapy water for 20 or more seconds.”
For additional information about Scene Clean and its services, visit www.SceneCleanMN.com.
Media Note: For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Media Relations, Inc. at 952-697-5220.
Scene clean has also provided links to additional resources
- CDC/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Resources & Information (www.cdc.gov)
- FDA/Food and Drug Administration – Testing Kits (www.fda.gov)
- Homeland Security – Travel restrictions & Pandemic Preparedness (www.dhs.gov)
- EPA/Environmental Protection Agency – Disinfectants that meet criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2 (www.epa.gov)
- WHO/World Health Organization – Information & Guidance (www.who.int)
Additional Resources for businesses and employers – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/businesses-employers.html
CDC printable resources – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/communication/factsheets.html
Biography: Nate Berg, President and Founder, Paramedic (Ret.), ABRA Certified Bio Recovery Technician, IICRC WRT, Licensed General Contractor & Licensed MN Real Estate Broker
Nate grew up in the Twin Cities and became an EMT during his senior year of high school. After high school he went on to become a Paramedic and work 911 ALS (Advanced Life Support) ambulance first in rural MN and later in the metro for a large trauma center. In 2010, after 15 years of active service in EMS he retired from active duty and retired his license in 2016 after 21 years.
It was during the years of active Paramedic duty Nate began to see a need in the metro for services that go beyond the traditional scope of public safety personnel. Once the emergency needs are full-filled, family and friends of the victims are left to take care of the often times horrific scene left behind. His goal with Scene Clean is simple; take the services provided by emergency personal and extend the care and professionalism into the cleanup of the scene and mental support for the families during the cleanup.
Nate served on the board of directors for The Hoarding Project, a non-profit organization based in Tacoma, Washington. The Hoarding Project’s goal is to enhance awareness regarding the issues of hoarding and the concerns with helping those who suffer from it. As a published expert in the area of hoarding Nate and the crew at Scene Clean lead the way when it comes to hoarding clean out professionals in Minnesota.
Nate is also the broker/owner of New Leaf Realty and a licensed MN general contractor #BC736960. As both a real estate broker and a general contractor Nate is very knowledgeable with anything regarding housing from sales, valuations to repairs and restoration. This knowledge and experience has helped hundreds of Scene Clean clients be able to navigate the other issues that may come up such as estate sales and re-construction of homes after the remediation process.
Jenny Berg, Vice President of Community Relations & Outreach; Clean Tech
Jenny has been a small business owner and has run the most profitable dept for one of the largest companies in Minnesota. She has excellent customer relationship skills and this made her the perfect fit to help Scene Clean reach out to the community we serve.
Jenny’s favorite part of her role at Scene Clean is working as an advocate and resource for clients during a difficult time in their lives.
Jenny is the former Co-Chair of the Minnesota Hoarding Task Force, and works closely with Care Resource Connection. She organizes all volunteer and philanthropic endeavors in which Scene Clean participates.