Eliminate Hoarding Hazards Today
Hoarding Can Create Hazardous Situations
Spring cleaning is pretty much the overall theme for the month of May no matter where you live. Even many of the recognized holidays during the course of the month follow that vein…
May 10th – Clean Up Your Room Day
May 17th – National Pack Rat Day
May 18th – No Dirty Dishes Day
While all of these days are meant to put a chord of fun into the prospect of Spring cleaning, there can be a real need to do so.
No… it’s not just because you have company coming over to your home or camp soon… although that IS a good reason.
Sometimes, our family members can fall into the unfortunate habit of hoarding. For people who are true, compulsive hoarders, the need to preserve items in their home can often be an emotionally and physically destructive behavior.
Hazards of Hoarding
Hoarders are people who have a compulsive need to stockpile all kinds of belongings. Hoarding is often associated with depression and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) to name a few.
Very often, family members think that the hoarder is ‘going through a phase.’ Unfortunately, nothing can be further from the truth.
Hoarders not only have a need to never throw away items, but they continue to collect more. Before family members can begin to address the issue, things have often progressed quickly into dangerous conditions.
Because conditions inside the home of a hoarder can deteriorate quickly, it can become a hazardous situation not only for the hoarder, but for neighbors, family members and visitors.
The dangers of hoarding include:
Health & Physical Hazards
Increased Risk of Falls – In most hoarding situations, items are thrown about haphazardly. If there is any organization to the clutter, it is merely to allow for small, barely passable walkways through the debris. Obviously, this situation increases the chances for falls… which inevitable raises the risk for injury.
Poor Air Quality & Mold – Large amounts of clutter create a lack of proper ventilation. Increased amounts of dust, decaying organic materials and high humidity are the perfect storm for bad air and mold. These air quality problems lead to medical issues including allergies, chronic coughing, shortness of breath and worst.
Pest Infestations – A hoarder’s home usually has decomposing food throughout which makes it a haven for critters of all kinds. Ants, cockroaches, flies and rats are just the beginning of the new cohabitants. Once the home is infested, these creatures can carry any number of diseases along with them.
Fire & Structural Damage
Fire is one of the greatest risks in the home of a hoarder. Most of the items accumulated are flammable materials such as paper and clothing.
There are a number of reasons for the increased risk of fire beyond the amount of materials inside the home. The proximity of these flammable items to heat sources such has stoves, incandescent bulbs, heaters, etc. helps set the stage. Add to this, that critter infestations can mean that wiring becomes a chew toy… enter another fire hazard.
The fire hazards don’t stop there. If a fire does start, because of all the materials in a small space, fire and smoke will spread very quickly.
Clutter results in blocked means of egress. This is dangerous not only for the occupants, but the first responders arriving to help battle the blaze and save lives.
Other forms of structural damage to the home also happen. Uneven weight distribution of hoarded materials can damage the home or cause structural collapse.
But more than this, hoarders are less likely to keep up with needed maintenance in the home. Let’s not forget the vermin who will be taking up residence, they will start to eat their way through wall, floors and wiring… a recipe for disaster.
Psychological & Sociological Hazards
A person’s quality of life is also adversely affected by hoarding behavior. This can lead to a number effects that are much less visible, but just as devastating.
Because this behavior can cause conflicts with family, friends and neighbors, hoarders often become reclusive. They don’t feel comfortable leaving their home, thus avoid social interaction and often fall into depression.
Finally, this destructive behavior can lead to financial issues. If they even leave their home to go to work, they will usually spend the majority of their money on more ‘things.’ This can eventually lead to legal issues by defaulting on bills or when agitated neighbors get ‘fed up’ with what they consider to be deplorable conditions.
Cleaning Out The Hoard
Your friends and neighbors here at SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland hope that you never have to deal with a relative who is a hoarder. But if you have someone in your life that is at risk from this situation, use this time of year to help them.
For help with emergency clean out situations, call us at 207-338-1850.
Importance of Professional Crime Scene Clean-up
Crime Scenes Require Professional Clean-up
It doesn't matter where you live... all you have to do is turn on the local news... and on any given day, there are stories about crimes that are frankly unimaginable by most people.
While most people are fortunate to only be effected by these incidents because they heard them on the news, some have to deal with the aftermath.
SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland understands how these unfortunate situations can effect people in Maine. We are your neighbors here in Belfast and the surrounding areas.
We understand the need to respond quickly and efficiently. By doing so, we hope to reduce the impact of these events on the professionals, family and friends that were exposed to the situation.
Driven by our core values, we treat everyone involved with empathy and respect. We realize that whatever the situation, it has been trying enough, you don't need to deal with additional stress.
Crime Scene Impacts
Each crime scene and situation is certainly unique and as such, each scene provides particular hazards and needs to ensure proper restoration and clean-up.
What are some of the potential hazards?
> Bloodbourne Pathogens - Accidents, traumas and deaths can result in the need for the removal and disposal of bodily fluids and other pathogenic materials.
> Crime Scene Residues - Crime scene interventions and investigations often require the use of various chemicals. Some of these chemicals include tear gas, pepper spray, fire extinguishers, fingerprint powder and other evidence gathering chemicals.
> Illicit Drugs - Dangerous chemicals are often used in the production of illicit drugs, such as methamphetamine. The professionals from SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland follow all federal and state guidelines regarding the proper cleaning of affected areas.
> Vandalism - Quick identification and removal of substances used to vandalize property is key to their effective elimination and ultimately restoration of an effected area.
Importance of Clean-up Professionals
Regardless of the crime scene, having the knowledge and capability to quickly and safely remove and clean all the hazardous chemicals and materials is paramount. Failure to do so, puts people at risk.
SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland has training, personal protective gear and the equipment necessary to safely remove any biohazards at a scene and ensure proper disposal.
Need Biohazard or Crime Scene Clean-up?
Dealing with the events that lead to a crime scene are undoubtedly difficult. So having one less worry when it comes time to clean it up can be a blessing.
SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland are the professionals you need to ensure that your environment is clean and safe. We will respond quickly and provide experienced services with courtesy, empathy and the quality you need in a biohazard clean-up and restoration situation.
We are just a phone call away, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week - call us at 207-338-1850.
Biohazard Clean-Up: One of the Many Services We Offer
SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland is fully equipped to handle any sort of disaster and get you back into your home as quickly as possible.
While SERVPRO is the #1 leader in the restoration industry, we're equipped to handle much more than just fire or water damage! Disasters come in all shapes and sizes; whether it is an act of vandalism or a full on crime scene, SERVPRO Technicians are trained to cleanup and restore messes of all degrees:
SERVPRO Professionals remove and dispose of bodily fluids, tissue and other potentially pathogenic substances resulting from accident, trauma, crime or death. Trained SERVPRO Technicians thoroughly clean, disinfect and deodorize the scene.
Crime Scene Residues
From fingerprint powder and evidence-gathering chemicals to tear gas and pepper spray residues, SERVPRO Professionals can clean and restore your property and contents.
Arson and Vandalism
SERVPRO Professionals are recognized as leaders at helping property owners recover quickly from fire and water damage. Your professional also provides general cleaning and deodorization services for situations resulting from vandalism including graffiti, egg, spoiled foods and human or animal waste.
Sewage backups and black water intrusions are more than nasty, smelly deposits – these damages also introduce harmful microorganisms into a structure. SERVPRO Professionals remove the sewage, contaminants and moisture, disinfecting and deodorizing as they clean.
No one should have to sit in a house or work in a business contaminated with anything listed above, so make sure you call SERVPRO of Belfast/Camden/Rockland at (207)338-1850. One phone call to us will begin the process of making it "Like it never even happened."