According to the IICRC S500, “Sewage is one of the most dangerous substances to enter homes or buildings. It contains fungi, bacteria, and viruses, many of which are disease-causing. Unfortunately, many people fail to understand the hazards that sewer backup presents, particularly for the very young or very old, or for those with compromised immune systems or respiratory problems.”
The IICRC complied guidelines for professional sewage clean-up called the Standard for Water Damage Restoration (S500).
Here are the fundamental principles homeowners should know about sewer & drain backups:
- It is not safe to stay in a building that’s flooded with sewage unless the contaminated area can be completely sealed off and placed under controlled air flow so that there will be no cross contamination of unaffected areas.
- Highly absorbent sewage-saturated materials, such as carpet, pad, upholstery, bedding, wicker, paper, drywall, insulation, and other structural materials or even fabrics that can’t be washed in hot water (130°F/54°C) for at least 10 minutes, must be contained and disposed of properly. There’s simply too great a health risk involved if any of these materials are dried in place and cleaned only.
- Only the most highly-trained professionals should attempt sewage backup remediation work. Then, a “third party” indoor environmental professional can provide post-remediation verification or “clearance testing” to ensure that the home or building is safe to re-occupy.
Typical sewage problem situations where we’d conduct sewer backup cleanup include:
- Toilet seepage
- Pipe blockage
- Growth of large roots
- Sewer main blockage
- Sewer overflow from flooding
We treat your home or business and personal belongings with the best care throughout the sewer backup cleanup process and to help ensure that we can restore them to their pre-loss condition. Quality control is something we take very seriously to make sure that we gain your confidence and loyalty.
Resource: Retrieved from https://www.iicrc.org/consumers/care/water-damage