(DALLAS) — A crew of hazardous materials experts called the “Cleaning Guys” are in charge of disinfecting the Dallas apartment where an Ebola victim was staying, they told ABC News Friday.
“It’s not just another day on the job,” company Vice President Brad Smith said.
“Obviously, I think anyone involved would be worried — not necessarily worried, but cautious. We’ve had a lot of discussions and team meetings about how we’re going to attack the situation. But we run into hazardous chemicals and things that could hurt us probably more often than most,” Smith said.
The company specializes in hazmat services as well as industrial and crime scene cleaning and power washing.
Smith has a crew of six to eight people on the scene at the east Dallas apartment complex where Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person to be diagnosed with the deadly disease in the U.S., had been staying, he said.
They’re wearing Level B protective equipment, including fully encapsulated suits and a full-face respirator with a shield. Duncan’s apartment is a two-bedroom and approximately 1,000 square feet.
“We’re in phase one cleaning at this point,” Smith said. “Taking personal belongings of the patient, and linens, and the bed where he was sleeping. The protocol is to obviously triple bag it and we will prepare it for transportation by another company to its final destination for disposal.”
The Cleaning Guys have been in contact with and are receiving guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dallas County health officials and the Department of Homeland Security.
Friday’s cleaning, which started in the morning, should take about six hours, Smith said, adding that he and his crew have not yet been briefed on what the second phase of cleaning will entail.
“We work closely with cities as hazmat responders and we have contracts with the city,” he added. “We train for this type of thing. Obviously, we haven’t trained for Ebola because there hasn’t been a situation in Texas until now.”
Kasey Bonner, an administrative assistant for the Cleaning Guys, told ABC News that taking the job was a hard decision.
“It took our vice president some time to make a decision,” she said. “Long and hard thinking on that one. But our team is pretty skilled.”
Duncan, who is from Liberia and arrived in Dallas on Sept. 20, is in an isolation unit and his family is also being monitored, authorities said. Health officials are also tracking down about 100 other people who might have come in contact with the patient.
- History of the Ebola Virus
- Ebola Virus Symptoms and Prevention Tips
- Questions and Answers About the US Ebola Case
- The US Ebola Case: 5 Things To Know
- Up Close with Patients in the Throes of Ebola
- Dallas Hospital Patient Tests Positive for Ebola
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Crew Cleaning Ebola Patient’s Apartment ‘Not Worried, But Cautious’ was originally published on news92fm.com
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