Dealing with a homeless encampment can be very trying, especially if you’re trying to clean it up. Homelessness has been on the rise in California for years, and the result of the increasing numbers of homeless people is the rise in the number of homeless encampments. The social issues surrounding homelessness are difficult to handle, but these serious health issues surrounding the sheer number of encampments needs to be dealt with right away. When an enchantment has to be cleaned up, it can feel like a very overwhelming task, especially if you have no experience in the matter. We can help. 

What Is a Homeless Encampment?

A homeless encampment is usually referred to as an area where two or more homeless people set up camp on a property that does not belong to them. They construct temporary structures made out of materials like blankets and cardboard boxes that will provide them with makeshift shelter. 

These structures are not always built out of the way of the public eye but in fact are literally set up wherever there is space. They’re often built in areas where the public has regular access, including parks, beaches, retail districts, and near residential areas. This creates a serious quality-of-life issue for the people who live and work in those areas. On top of creating an unsightly view, the encampments also create serious health risks that can threaten the entire community. 

What Type of Waste Do You Find in Homeless Encampments?

There are many different types of waste and garbage found at homeless encampment sites.

Biohazardous Waste

Biohazardous waste is one of the most dangerous types of waste found at homeless encampment sites. Biohazardous waste is any type of waste that contains pathogens, the dangerous microbes that cause diseases in humans. Homeless encampments are absolutely filled with this type of waste, which includes substances like human waste, animal waste, drug paraphernalia, blood, bodily fluids, garbage, rotting food, and any other type of material that hosts pathogens. 

Pathogens like virus and bacteria run rampant at homeless encampments since they’re present in nearly every type of biohazard on site, making these materials extremely dangerous for anyone involved in cleanup. This is a key reason that people who need to have encampment cleaning done decide to have it handled by professionals. Professional homeless encampment cleaning teams have the equipment and tools necessary to safely handle cleanup without contaminating themselves, other structures and surfaces, and other people.

Regular Trash/Garbage

In addition to biohazardous waste, there’s tons of regular trash as well. Many people abandon their belongings when they leave homeless encampments, so our team packs everything up and either haul it into dumpsters for disposal or place it into special containers if that trash turns out to be biohazardous waste. These are the types of items that would pile up at homeless encampments and make it difficult for people to walk past, creating obstructions and fire hazards.

 Combustible Materials

Many people bring illegal heating sources into homeless encampments in order to cook their food. These items can be things like crudely constructed hobo stoves or little kerosene stoves. Safety procedures are usually not followed, so the likelihood of causing a fire or an explosion is very real. We will dispose of all of these items in the appropriate manner, and we’ll make sure that no combustible items or liquids are left behind. 

How Do Workers Protect Themselves When They Work on Homeless Encampment Clean Up?

Our professional cleanup teams are clad in PPE from head to toe. They wear full-body suits to help protect them from splashes from any contaminated liquid. They wear face shields and respirators that help protect their eyes, noses, and mouths from becoming contaminated with any liquid biohazard. They wear special shoes that are made out of material that repels wet materials. If they don’t have these shoes, they wear special shoe covers that help keep them protected from substances on the ground. They wear special gloves that are puncture-proof so that when they’re picking up drug paraphernalia and other sharps from the ground, their hands are safe. 

In addition to all of the PPE gear, our teams are also well-versed in all of the rules and regulations regarding biohazard cleaning, ensuring that they follow the state of California’s very strict standards for biohazardous waste pickup and removal.. They remain up-to-date with the very latest standards and protocols needed to ensure that the newly cleaned area is safe from and completely clear of biohazard waste. 

This is one of the key reasons that homeless encampment cleanup is best left to the professionals. They have the tools in the know how to be able to clean a site safely, securely and thoroughly.

You probably have a lot of questions. Give us a call so that we can help you start the process of getting started with homeless encampment cleanup in Irvine.