If you’re looking into homeless encampment cleanup in West Hollywood, California, you probably already realize that you’re dealing with a difficult situation. The number of homeless encampments in Hollywood has risen dramatically over the past few years, creating disruption in the neighborhood. 

As world events have had a direct effect on people’s housing circumstances, it’s become more and more important to ensure that homeless encampments don’t lead to the spread of diseases. In some parts of the city, homeless encampments are cleared of residents temporarily while the city handles cleanup with the help of the sanitation department. In other parts of the city, you’re dealing with homeless encampments that are located on private property. In those cases, the cleaning of the encampment falls to the business owners or the homeowners who own that property.

Can We Clean the Encampment Ourselves?

Some people decide that they’re going to clean up the homeless encampments located on their properties themselves. They do this because they think that it’s a way to save money. This isn’t the best idea. Homeless encampment cleaning requires very specific tools, PPE gear, cleaners, and cleaning expertise to help ensure that every bit of dangerous waste is removed from the site. If you don’t have that expertise, or if you don’t realize how important certain cleaners are, you’re going to end up with a situation where you could end up with unintentional disease spread. It’s much better to work with professionals who know exactly what they’re doing.

Another reason that it’s not a great idea for average citizens to handle homeless encampment cleanup is that they’re probably not clued in to just how unsanitary and filthy those encampments actually are. They’ll be dealing with waste like blood, human waste, animal waste, and other types of waste that’s sometimes very difficult for even the most experienced sanitation worker to handle. The much better solution is to work with a team that’s used to handling extreme types of waste.

What Is Biohazardous Waste?

Biohazardous waste is waste that contains pathogens. Pathogens are microorganisms that cause diseases in humans. Bloodborne pathogens are transmitted through blood, easily infecting anyone who comes into contact with them through items like drug paraphernalia or open wounds. Other types of pathogens like salmonella and E coli are also found at homeless encampments due to situations like the presence of rotting food that hasn’t been properly refrigerated. If people come into contact with this food, it’s very easy for them to get sick. The biohazardous waste located at homeless encampment sites include blood, bodily fluids, human waste, animal waste, animal carcasses, and many other sources.

It’s important to note that the spread of diseases at homeless encampments happens very easily. People are touching the same items, they step on needles that are left behind by other people, they eat the same food, and they breathe the same air. This makes the likelihood of disease spread highly probable. It’s for this reason that once a homeless encampment is cleared of its residents, intense cleaning must be done to make sure that no pathogens have remained behind that could infect anyone coming into the space later on.

What’s the Process for Cleaning a Homeless Encampment?

Once the tenants have left a homeless encampment, cleaning can begin. At our company, a team will go out and assess the space. We’ll be able to determine how large the encampment is, the types of waste located there, and how big of a team will be needed to get the job done. We’ll be able to estimate how long the job will take to complete. We’ll also be able to figure out which tools we’ll need to handle any special cleanup needs of the encampment.

Next, we’ll need to break down all of the structures in the camp. These structures will consist of everything that the residents used to provide shelter for themselves. This includes tents that have been left behind, boxes, blankets, and anything else that they use for shelter that will no longer be abused. Keep in mind that with many encampment cleanup arrangements, residents are allowed to take certain items with them. If that’s the case with your specific encampment, their items will most likely have to be moved to some sort of a storage facility.

Once the structures have been broken down, the next thing we’ll do is to remove all of the biohazardous waste, infectious waste, and any other signs of visible waste. All of this will be put into special containers and bags that are specially designed to help ensure that the contents remain inside the bags and don’t contaminate anyone or any surfaces that they may come into contact with.

Once the waste has been removed, cleaning can begin. This is when we bring in the heavy-duty cleaners, solvent, and deodorizers. The cleaners that we use are OSHA and EPA approved. This means that these agencies have approved them for use in destroying and eliminating all pathogens so that the site can become safe for habitation once again. Once the site has been thoroughly washed down, disinfection will take place. After disinfection is done, the place will be the deodorized.

Once all of the cleaning has been done, the biohazardous waste will be transferred to a medical waste facility where it will be destroyed. The final resting place for most incinerated and destroyed biohazardous waste is a sanitary landfill.

Give us a call if you have any questions about cleaning up a homeless encampment in your area. We’re available around the clock, so we’re always available to answer your questions. We can help determine what your responsibilities are regarding the encampment and what the next steps should be. The key thing to remember is that you don’t have to do it alone.