Bio-One of Fremont decontamination and biohazard cleaning services

What to Ask Before Hiring a Crime Scene Cleaner in Alameda County and Santa Clara County

The origins of crime- and trauma-scene cleaning services can be traced back to the 1990s when only a handful of companies operated in this industry. At that time, the field lacked regulation, and awareness of contamination risks was minimal.

Professional crime scene and biohazard decontamination cleaning company

"I was young and inexperienced and found myself in a situation straight out of a movie. I quickly took action to assist a woman in her time of dire need, and that's how I entered the crime scene and cleaning business," shared Nick-Anthony Zamucen, Founder of Bio-One Inc. Read more about Nick's journey in Franchise Times.

Today, the landscape has changed dramatically, with hundreds of companies advertising crime and trauma scene cleaning services. However, navigating through this multitude of options during one of life's most traumatic moments can be overwhelming. To help you make an informed decision, we've compiled a list of questions to ask before selecting a crime and trauma scene company.

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Crime and Trauma Scene Cleaner

When evaluating crime and trauma scene cleaning technicians or business owners, asking the right questions is crucial to finding the best fit for your needs and circumstances.

  1. Are you local? Response time is critical in dealing with blood spills to prevent biohazards from spreading and to ensure swift remediation. Avoid companies with technicians located hours away, and steer clear of toll-free numbers that may lead to call centers. Bio-One Fremont typically responds within 30 to 60 minutes.
  2. Is your business certified and insured? Ensure that the cleaning company holds certifications in handling bloodborne pathogens and follows OSHA guidelines for personal protective equipment (PPE) and remediation processes. Additionally, verify that they are adequately insured to protect both your property and their employees. Bio-One Fremont's technicians are certified in Mental Heath First Aid and trained by by the San Francisco County Department of Mental Health to better communicate with their clients.
  3. What is your process for disposing of biohazardous waste? Proper disposal of biohazardous waste is essential for public health and safety. Verify that the company is familiar with local regulations regarding waste disposal and has a robust plan in place to adhere to these guidelines. Bio-One Fremont is a licensed Trauma Scene Waste (TSW) Management Practitioner with the state of California. (License #806)
  4. What happens to valuable or personal items impacted by the cleanup? A professional cleaning service should be respectful of your possessions, especially items of sentimental or monetary value. Ask how they handle such items and whether they will keep you informed throughout the process. Bio-One Fremont provides clients with a "Property Retention Form". This form helps the highly trained technicians search for valuable items during their cleaning process. The current 2024 list of recovered items includes: Cash ($6,300 and counting), Jewelry (Valued at over $21,000), Pension Documents, Family Trust Plans, Vehicle Titles, Military Pensions, Investment and Banking Accounts and more...
  5. How will you charge for your services? Understand the billing process upfront, particularly if you plan to file a claim with your home insurance. Reputable companies like Bio-One Fremont can assist with insurance claims, alleviating the burden on you. If you're uninsured, request a free line-item estimate to compare costs with other local providers.
  6. Will you prioritize discretion during and after the job? Confidentiality is paramount in sensitive situations. Choose a company that values discretion, such as Bio-One Fremont, whose unmarked vehicles and discreet work practices ensure privacy for you and your neighbors.
  7. Do you provide post-cleanup resources? Beyond cleaning, you may need flooring replaced or fresh drywall installed, which will also be covered under your home insurance claim, and a recommendation could help speed up the reconstruction process. Bio-One Fremont connections with local counselors and victim's advocates. A reputable company should be able to recommend trusted resources to support you through the aftermath.

Above all, ensure that the company you choose demonstrates care and compassion for your situation. Their primary focus should be on providing support and assistance to you and your loved ones during this challenging time.

If you're in need of a compassionate and professional crime and trauma scene cleaner, Bio-One Fremont is here for you. All our offices operate by the motto "Help First, Business Second" and are available 24/7. Reach out to us or click here to locate a Bio-One team near you.

In March of 2018, Kevin Jameson, owner of Bio-One Fremont, found his truck was stolen during a period that saw over 40 trucks stolen in a 3 month period. Luckily, OnStar helped to locate the truck, but only after a fair amount of drugs were used in the cab. Kevin can confirm he was not alone in this experience.

Law enforcement experts have affirmed that stolen vehicles are often repurposed for various illicit activities by criminals. This includes drug consumption, which poses contamination risks and health hazards for anyone exposed to these vehicles. Here are some common ways stolen vehicles are exploited by criminals:

Transportation for Illegal Activities: Criminals often utilize stolen vehicles as a means of transportation for committing additional crimes, including robbery, burglary, drug trafficking, human trafficking, and contraband smuggling. The anonymity afforded by a stolen vehicle aids criminals in evading detection and executing illegal operations.

Resale on the Black Market: Some thieves target vehicles with the intent to sell them on the black market or to unsuspecting buyers. Stolen vehicles may be stripped for parts, which are then sold individually, or they may be given new identities through fraudulent documentation before being sold to unsuspecting individuals.

Chop Shop Operations: In chop shop operations, stolen vehicles are dismantled, and their components are sold separately for profit. Valuable parts like engines, transmissions, and electronics are removed and sold to consumers seeking cheaper alternatives to legitimate auto parts.

Joyriding and Street Racing: Stolen vehicles are sometimes taken for joyrides or used in illegal street racing activities. Joyriding involves driving stolen vehicles recklessly for excitement, often leading to property damage, accidents, or injuries to innocent bystanders.

Use in Other Crimes: Stolen vehicles may serve as getaway vehicles in the commission of other crimes, such as bank robberies, carjackings, or shootings. The mobility provided by a stolen vehicle enables criminals to quickly flee the scene of a crime and evade capture by law enforcement.

Temporary Shelter or Hideout: Homeless individuals or fugitives on the run may repurpose stolen vehicles as temporary shelters or hideouts to evade authorities or harsh weather conditions. Abandoned or stolen vehicles may be converted into makeshift living spaces or sleeping quarters.

Insurance Fraud: In instances of insurance fraud, criminals may stage vehicle thefts to file false insurance claims and receive payouts from insurance companies. Stolen vehicles may be abandoned or disposed of after the fraudulent claim has been processed.

Overall, criminals exploit stolen vehicles for a range of illegal activities, including transportation for further crimes, resale on the black market, chop shop operations, joyriding, and involvement in other criminal endeavors.

If your vehicle was recently recovered, Bio-One Fremont can assist in removing odors from cigarette and marijuana smoke, or body odor. They can also remove residue form methamphetamine. Once cleaned, Bio-One Fremont will provide you with a Certificate of Disinfection should you wish to sell your vehicle.

In the bustling real estate market of California, property transactions can be both exciting and challenging. However, amidst the flurry of buying and selling, there's a crucial aspect that cannot be overlooked: disclosure laws regarding deaths on a property. In California, sellers are required to disclose any death on the property within the last three years, regardless of the circumstances. This disclosure requirement can pose a significant hurdle for property owners, especially when faced with the task of selling a house where somebody has died.

Enter Bio-One of Fremont, a trusted leader in biohazard cleanup and disinfection services. With their expertise in handling sensitive situations and their commitment to providing compassionate, thorough services, Bio-One of Fremont offers a solution for Alameda County, Contra Costa County and Santa Clara County property owners navigating the complexities of selling a house with a death disclosure requirement.

One of the most valuable services offered by Bio-One of Fremont is their Disinfection Certification. This certification signifies that the property has undergone a comprehensive disinfection process, ensuring that any biohazards or contaminants associated with the death have been effectively removed. Not only does this certification provide peace of mind to potential buyers, but it also helps property owners fulfill their legal obligations regarding disclosure.

So, how does Bio-One of Fremont's Disinfection Certification benefit California property owners facing the challenge of selling a house where somebody has died?

  1. Compliance with Disclosure Laws: By obtaining Bio-One of Fremont's Disinfection Certification, property owners can demonstrate that they have taken proactive steps to address any biohazards associated with a death on the property. This can help them fulfill their legal obligation to disclose such events to potential buyers, easing the selling process and reducing the risk of legal complications down the line.
  2. Enhanced Property Value: Properties with a history of death, whether peaceful or otherwise, can often face stigma and reluctance from potential buyers. However, by obtaining a Disinfection Certification from Bio-One of Fremont, property owners can showcase their commitment to safety and cleanliness, thereby enhancing the perceived value of the property and increasing its marketability.
  3. Peace of Mind for Buyers: Purchasing a home is a significant investment, both financially and emotionally. Buyers want to feel confident that the property they are purchasing is safe and free from any lingering hazards. By providing a Disinfection Certification from Bio-One of Fremont, sellers can offer reassurance to potential buyers, fostering trust and confidence in the transaction.
  4. Professional Expertise and Compassionate Service: Bio-One of Fremont's team of trained professionals understands the sensitivity of the situations they encounter and approaches each job with compassion, respect, and discretion. Property owners can trust that their property will be treated with the utmost care and attention to detail, ensuring thorough disinfection and restoration.

In conclusion, Bio-One of Fremont's Disinfection Certification offers a valuable solution for California property owners faced with the challenge of selling a house where somebody has died. By providing comprehensive disinfection services and certification, Bio-One of Fremont helps property owners comply with disclosure laws, enhance property value, and provide peace of mind to buyers. With their professional expertise and compassionate approach, Bio-One of Fremont is a trusted partner for navigating the complexities of real estate transactions in California.

In the aftermath of a crime, accident, or traumatic event, the cleanup of the scene often falls to specialized professionals trained to handle biohazards and hazardous materials. However, unlike many other industries, crime scene cleanup operates within a regulatory gray area, where oversight and standards vary widely across jurisdictions. This lack of uniform regulation raises concerns regarding safety, service quality, and ethical practices within the industry.

One primary challenge stemming from this lack of regulation is the potential for inconsistencies in training and certification standards among crime scene cleanup companies. While some states may have certification programs or voluntary guidelines, there is no standardized national framework governing the qualifications and training requirements for individuals entering the field. Consequently, there may be disparities in the level of expertise and professionalism among cleanup providers, posing risks to both workers and the public.

Moreover, the absence of regulatory oversight can lead to ethical concerns regarding the exploitation of vulnerable individuals in distressing situations. Without clear guidelines, unscrupulous companies may engage in price gouging, predatory marketing tactics, or substandard practices, taking advantage of clients' emotional vulnerability during times of crisis. This underscores the urgent need for standardized regulations to protect consumers and ensure ethical conduct within the industry.

Furthermore, the lack of regulatory oversight may hinder efforts to enforce health and safety standards in crime scene cleanup operations. Biohazardous materials present significant risks of exposure to bloodborne pathogens, toxins, and infectious diseases, necessitating strict protocols for handling, disposal, and decontamination. Without regulatory mechanisms to monitor compliance with these standards, there is potential for lapses in safety practices, putting both cleanup workers and the public at risk.

In conclusion, the absence of regulation in crime scene cleanup represents a critical gap in oversight that poses risks to safety, service quality, and ethical conduct within the industry. To address these concerns, there is a pressing need for comprehensive regulatory frameworks at the state and national levels, establishing clear standards for training, certification, safety protocols, and ethical practices. By implementing robust regulatory measures, we can ensure that crime scene cleanup operations uphold the highest standards of professionalism, safety, and integrity, providing essential services to communities in times of need.

In times of family crisis, such as the loss of a loved one, unattended death, or a traumatic crime scene, the last thing you want to worry about is the cost of cleaning and restoring your property. Fortunately, many insurance policies cover these traumatic situations, providing a lifeline for those in need. Bio-One, with over 15 years of experience in trauma and crime scene cleanup, understands the challenges and complexities associated with these situations. That's why we're dedicated to working directly with your insurance provider to make the process as smooth as possible, from opening the claim to completing the project. This not only eases the financial burden but also allows you to focus on what truly matters - moving forward.

Understanding Insurance Coverage for Trauma and Crime Scene Cleanup

Before delving into how Bio-One collaborates with insurance companies, it's essential to comprehend the insurance aspect of trauma and crime scene cleanup. Many standard homeowners' and renters' insurance policies cover the costs associated with the restoration of properties affected by traumatic events. These policies aim to provide financial relief to those dealing with the emotional and physical aftermath of such incidents.

Bio-One's Role in Insurance Coordination

When a traumatic event occurs, you may be dealing with immense grief and emotional stress. During this challenging time, handling insurance claims and the logistics of cleanup can be overwhelming. This is where Bio-One's insurance coordination services come into play.

  1. Initial Contact: As soon as you reach out to Bio-One, our experienced team will initiate contact with your insurance provider. This step is crucial in ensuring that the cleanup process aligns with your insurance policy.
  2. Claim Documentation: We work diligently to gather all necessary documentation, including photos and reports, to support your insurance claim. This thorough approach helps streamline the approval process.
  3. Direct Billing: Bio-One offers direct billing to insurance companies. This means that you won't need to worry about managing financial transactions with your insurer. We handle it all, making the process hassle-free for you.
  4. Transparent Communication: Throughout the project, we maintain transparent communication with both you and your insurance company. This ensures that everyone is on the same page, and there are no surprises along the way.
  5. Experienced Guidance: With over 15 years of experience, our insurance coordinators are well-versed in navigating the complexities of insurance claims related to trauma and crime scene cleanup. We advocate on your behalf, ensuring that your policy is fully utilized.

Restoring Your Property, Restoring Peace of Mind

Bio-One's primary goal is to provide a safe and habitable space for you and your family as quickly as possible. When insurance companies are involved, we ensure that the cleanup and restoration process proceeds without unnecessary delays. By working directly with your insurer, we minimize any financial barriers that might impede your ability to return to normalcy.

This approach not only simplifies the insurance process but also allows you to focus on the emotional healing and recovery that come with traumatic events. Grieving, coping, and finding support are essential steps on your journey, and Bio-One aims to facilitate them by handling the logistical aspects of trauma and crime scene cleanup.

Conclusion

In times of family crisis, insurance coverage can be a vital lifeline, and Bio-One understands the importance of leveraging this support. Our experienced team of insurance coordinators will work tirelessly to ensure that your property is returned to a safe and habitable state. By collaborating directly with your insurance company, we aim to make the process as seamless as possible, allowing you to focus on moving forward and finding healing during challenging times. Bio-One is here to provide not only restoration but also peace of mind when you need it most.


Bio-One What to Ask Before Hiring a Crime Scene Cleaner

The roots of crime- and trauma-scene cleaning companies can be traced to the 1990s, and at that time only a dozen or so companies existed. The industry was widely unregulated and awareness of contamination risks were relatively non-existant.

"I was young and dumb and saw something you only see in movies, so I quickly shut the door, took a deep breath, sat on the couch with the widow and told everyone else to get her out of here and take her to lunch, and we’ll clean this up for her," said Nick-Anthony Zamucen, Founder of Bio-One Inc. "We were just trying to help a lady in her greatest time of need, and that’s for me how I got into the crime scene and cleaning business."  Read Nick's story in Franchise Times

Today, there are hundreds of companies that advertise crime and trauma scene cleaning, and a simple Google search may prove overwhelming when you're experiencing one of the most traumatic moments in your life. To help, we've listed pre-qualifying questions to ask before choosing a crime and trauma scene company. 

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Crime and Trauma Scene Cleaner

There are a number of key questions to ask crime and trauma scene cleaning technicians or business owners to properly root out which one is best for your goals and circumstances. 

  • Are you local? When there's a blood spill, response time is key to prevent biohazards from spreading and to ensure quick remediation. Several businesses may pay for online advertising in your city, but their technicians could be 3 or more hours away. Furthermore, avoid calling toll free numbers. "These numbers often lead to call centers. We're local. They're not," said Ginger Akemon, owner of Bio-One in Jacksonville, FL
  • Is your business certified and insured? Professional crime and trauma scene cleaning companies should have bloodborne pathogen certifications, they should follow OSHA personal protective equipment (PPE) guidelines and remediation processes, and they should have insurance for their business. 
  • What is your process for disposing biohazardous waste? Once the remediation is complete, the accumulated waste will need to be disposed in accordance to local state guidelines. Make sure the business owner or technician is aware of these guidelines and has an appropriate plan for disposal.  
  • What happens to valuable or personal items that are impacted? At Bio-One, we are trained to be mindful of valuable and perceived valuable items, such as pictures, wallets, or a baseball card collection. Professional crime and trauma scene cleaners should ask if there are valuable items to keep an eye out for, and they will keep the family informed if these items are found. 
  • How will you charge for your services? In most cases, home insurance will cover the cost of biohazard remediation - less your deductible. Ask if they can open a claim on your behalf, taking this burden off your shoulders. If you don't have homeowners insurance, it's OK to ask for a free estimate so you can compare costs between other local companies. 
  • Will you be discrete during and after the job? Michele Amoranto, Bio-One owner in Oceanside, CA, always assures her clients that discretion is top of mind while her team is onsite. Bio-One vehicles are unmarked and technicians will designate work areas to don and doff PPE out of view from neighbors. 
  • Do you have a list of resources that can help after the cleanup? You may need flooring replaced or fresh drywall installed, which will also be covered under your home insurance claim, and a recommendation could help speed up the reconstruction process. Additionally, many crime and trauma scene cleaners have connections with local counselors and victim's advocates. In west Texas, Bio-One owner, Garrett Spooner, always offers a list of free mental health resources and states that, "Being volunteers of our local Crisis Intervention Unit, we consider our job incomplete without making sure our clients' mental health, grief process, and other issues our clients may have, are addressed."

Last but certainly most important, make sure the business you speak with shows care and compassion for your situation. They should want to do everything possible to support you and your loved ones.

If you are searching for a crime and trauma scene cleaner, Bio-One is here for you. All of our offices adhere to our business motto Help First, Business Second and are available 24/7. Click here to search for a Bio-One team near you.