Many times we not only have to deal with the putrid remains that have been left behind after the coroner has removed the body, ghastly odors that are seared into the nostrils, and bodily fluids which have saturated flooring, walls, or ceilings but also one of my least favorite aspects of these particular cases… bugs. Lots and lots of bugs.

One call we received into our Baltimore office earlier this year involved one such circumstance and it still has my skin crawling.

The work order had sent us out to a very charming older community near Atlantic City, New Jersey. The homes we passed on our way were smaller than most, but obviously well loved and had withstood the test of many years, much like the elderly residence which lived within.

Pulling up to the home we were met by an insurance representative who was employed by the bank that owned the house. Apparently the woman who called this place home had no family to speak of and once she had passed on, it had been reabsorbed. It was scheduled to be resold after we have finished with our work.

Once we were led inside, we were immediately assaulted by the ungodly smell of decomposition. Anyone who has ever had the misfortune of catching a wiff of death can tell you that it is an experience one does not soon forget. The odor stung my nose like a physical blow, actually bringing a tear or two to the surface.

Standing in the doorway to the small bedroom at the end of the hall, it was clear that the old woman had suffered a fatal medical event either coming or going to her bed. She had died where she had fallen, and had laid in the spot for nearly three weeks until the neighbors began reporting that the strong odor we had already familiarized ourselves with had started to affect their daily life. The police were called and the poor woman was finally found.

As we meticulous went through this woman’s home, cleaning away all of the evidence of her time here on earth, I couldn’t help but wonder who this lady had been in better times. Did she ever get married? Did she have children? Why was she alone in her final hours?

Stepping over some clothing, I noticed that the floor was moving and took a second to look closer before I realized that what I was looking at was thousands of wriggling maggots, disturbed by the removal of the body and our cleaning procedures.

It was enough to set even the most strong of stomach back on their heels.

It added a new facet to the job, and soon we had the bug foggers out, destroying these little crime scene cleaners of nature. When they were finally still, out came the vaccum to remove their tiny corpses. The entire time I had to choke back my breakfast. Hey, some people hate spiders. I. Hate. Maggots. Yuck.

All in all the job took about four days, including one full day just letting the Ozone Machine run to remove the indescribable smell on the molecular level. When we finished, we could barely recognize the home. It was a shame, though, as we drove away passing all those possessions, collected over a lifetime, just sitting there on the curb waiting to be delivered to their final resting place.

I couldn’t leave them there. I just couldn’t. So I loaded up as much of the stuff as I possibly could, choosing items that were not damaged or soiled, and I drove them to my local Goodwill Store. At least that way I felt like this woman would continue to live through those belongings as they helped other families live their lives.

You don’t want to try and attempt to clean up a crime scene or accident scene. Blood and other bodily fluids can contain dangerous pathogens which pose a significant risk to human health. Our scene clean up technicians will decontaminate and remove any blood, tissue or bodily fluids a crime and trauma scene has left behind. Advanced Bio Treatment is a professional scene cleaning company.

Regardless of whether the scene is at your home and personal property, a commercial business, or industrial site, we’ll strictly adhere to OSHA regulations and API Worksafe guidelines in our cleanup efforts. We only deploy EPA registered hospital grade cleansers and disinfectants.

If you need trauma or accidental death clean-up guidance, have questions about your payment options or current insurance policy covers don’t hesitate to give Advanced Bio Treatment a call at: 800-295-1684.

Ted Pelot Owner & President of Crime Scene Cleanup Company - Advanced Bio-Treatment