Biohazard is a word not often used in our daily vocabulary. Simply stated, it refers to biological substances that pose a threat to the health of living organisms, primarily that of humans. And unless you spent a lot of time in high school pouring over the Biology books and looking forward to the labs where you handled those pathetically dead frogs, you might not have heard of the word at all.
In the restoration industry, biohazards are usually encountered when responding to crime scene clean ups or to the untimely death of a loved one. Any bodily fluid that is expelled, particularly blood, can pose a threat to those who come in contact with that fluid. For that reason, First Restoration Services takes the handling of such situations very seriously.
Proper crime scene demeanor as well as industry standard cleaning protocols have always been considered “tools of the trade” at First Restoration Services. But not every biohazard is a result of a crime. The death of a loved one resulting from suicide, or even natural causes, can result in the release of biological substances that need to be properly managed and cleaned.
Having begun at First Restoration Services in 2009, Derek began his employment in the Emergency Services Department where he was among the technicians responding to emergency water losses and fire calls. Certainly his time spent on the job afforded him opportunities to learn, and for a little over a year, Derek plunged through the waters and sewage of the emergency world (literally) until his servant style of leadership brought him into the limelight. In late 2010, Derek was promoted to Cleaning Department Manager, and from that seat a whole new world began to emerge – one that included the trauma and drama of life intermingled with lives that would be forever changed.
While Derek’s daily duties as Cleaning Department Manager might take him into the home of a hoarder where he deals with decades of drier lint that the homeowner somehow cannot seem to part with, he may also be called to a fire loss where he is knee deep in debris and contents that the homeowner desperately (and instantly) desires to have cleaned and/or preserved. On other days Derek may find himself in the midst of a crime scene or unattended death scene, consoling a relative who has come to visit that aunt they had been unreachable on the phone, only to discover upon arrival that she died a week ago and her home now wreaks of life that has given way to death. At worst, he may be called to investigate the cleaning of a suicide where a gunshot blast has driven blood and body parts into the floor joists and walls of the home. With that tragedy awaits his steady and compassionate heart, consoling those left behind who are struggling to make sense of a suddenly chaotic situation, while at the same time demonstrating his professionalism and knowledge of the cleaning industry.
Possessing an inner strength that Derek contributes to the work of the Lord Jesus in his life (intermixed with the consistent encouragement of his wife, Wendy), no task is considered too gruesome or demeaning for him to undertake. Encountering such devastating circumstances throughout the course of a day’s work might leave some heavy-hearted, but not Derek! Derek truly exhibits calmness in the midst of the storms of life, and that calmness regenerates purpose to lives that have otherwise been painted with misery and all loss of hope.