Who Cleans Vehicles After A Death?

Wednesday 29th March 2023

Ellen Warren

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Area cordoned off by police with a sign


When a tragedy occurs on the road, you may be unaware of the type of decontamination your car will require. Whether you have just purchased a biohazard car or your vehicle needs a deep clean, you should never try to clean or decontaminate it yourself.

Here at ICE Cleaning, we offer thorough and effective trauma clean-up services. Our expert technicians are accredited by the National Association of Crime Scene Cleaners and provide a delicate, discreet service for trauma vehicle cleaning.

Read on to learn more about what a biohazard car is and who cleans vehicles after a death.

What is trauma cleaning?

Trauma cleaners are different from your average cleaning service. They are highly qualified individuals that specialise in cleaning up a variety of biohazards and decontaminating an area after a traumatic incident. Situations that require this expert cleaning include:

  • Crime scenes
  • Suicides
  • Undiscovered deaths
  • Car accidents
  • Hoarder cleaning

When an area requires trauma cleaning specialists, this will be because of bodily fluids present, like blood, urine, or saliva. Any individuals that were injured or died at the scene could have been carrying bloodborne diseases that need decontamination such as:

  • Malaria
  • Syphilis
  • Brucellosis
  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Hepatitis C (HCV)
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)

Deaths that occurred in a public place will require immediate clean-up to prevent the spread of bloodborne diseases. Debris from trauma scenes could also be contaminated, like glass from a crashed vehicle.

Who cleans up after a car accident?

When a car accident happens, the last thing you may think about is who cleans up the scene. Various workers will take part in the process of cordoning off the area, clearing away debris, and decontaminating the site.

Emergency workers, such as police or paramedics, are not responsible for cleaning debris or conducting a trauma clean. This is because they are not trained for biohazard cleaning and have other responsibilities that require immediate attention.

Tow companies hired by the local council will take away vehicles and debris. They may also be required to contain any oil, coolant, or gas from spilling into the nearby environment.

If anyone has been injured or died at the scene of a car accident, trauma cleaners will clean up the biohazards present once emergency workers have cleared the area. They will use specialist cleaning products and equipment to clean roads, pavements, and any buildings affected.

Why your vehicle could be seized after an accident

If you were involved in an accident that required investigation, police might seize your car for some time before returning it to you. Police could also do this when an accident has led to someone’s death or they believe a crime has occurred.

After a vehicle is seized, you can collect it once the police have informed you that it is clear for release. You must produce documents proving your ownership and then retrieve the vehicle after paying a release and storage fee if it is roadworthy.

However, if you do not collect your car, police may have it scrapped or sold at an auction. Once you have relinquished ownership, it will be cleaned by trauma cleaners and classed as a biohazard car at auctions.

What happens if your vehicle needs a trauma clean?

If your car was held in storage by police, it would not have been cleaned at the time it was seized. If you retained full ownership of your vehicle and it was exposed to any biohazards, you must have trauma cleaners come and decontaminate the vehicle.

Do not try to enter or drive the vehicle for your safety. Your car must be deep-cleaned by professionals to ensure it is safe, first.

What to do if your vehicle requires trauma cleaning

Do not try to clean the vehicle yourself. Domestic-standard cleaning products will not be strong enough to decontaminate the surfaces in your car, and specialist tools may be needed when cleaning the fabrics inside.

The solutions that trauma cleaners have access to are industrial-grade chemicals that will effectively remove bacteria that may be present. If your car has insurance, you should contact your insurance company to check if trauma and biohazard cleaning is in your policy.

If this is the case, you might be covered for this type of cleaning. However, if you are not, the insurance company will require your car to be decontaminated before they have it repaired.

Get in touch

Our trauma clean-up and vehicle cleaning services are leading the way for industrial cleaning. Here at ICE Cleaning, our specialised cleaners are available nationwide, 24/7. We can be on-site within a few hours in an emergency.

Get in touch with our friendly service team today at 0208 066 0360 or send us your details at enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk for a free site survey and no-obligation quote.

Sydney Bowell

Sydney Bowell

Operations Assistant

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