What is the purpose of the S540 Standard?
The purpose of the S540 is simple. It is clearly stated in the standard itself.
The standard states: “It is the purpose of this standard to define criteria and methodology used by the technician for inspecting and investigating blood and other potentially infectious material (OPIM) contamination and for establishing work plans and procedures.“
That is all. The purpose of the standard is to define criteria. This criteria relates to a technician when he or she is “inspecting” and “investigating” biohazardous materials for the sake of establishing work plans and procedures.
That’s all. It doesn’t teach HOW to do the work, prices jobs, market, operate on a day-to-day basis, tools to use, pay your employees, etc.
It is only about inspecting and coming up with work plans and procedures.
Anyone who has been in the industry for any length of time can tell you that 99.99% of all crime and trauma scene jobs all deal with the same risks, hazards, decontamination requirements, chemicals used, tools, PPE required and used, waste disposal methods, psychological issues, odors, etc. Therefore you will not have to figure out work plans and procedures.
Most crime and trauma scenes are in single family and multi family properties (homes and apartments) and they are all pretty much the same. They don’t require coming up with new work plans and procedures. They don’t require figuring out which chemicals you are going to use, they don’t require figuring out what PPE you are going to use, because one job is pretty much just like all the other jobs you will do.
Matter of fact if you follow many of the suggestions in the standard you will not get the job because families don’t want to move to hotels while you take a month to do the job. In the great majority of all jobs you will start the job when you show up at the scene and you will not leave until you have completed the job. This is emergency triage work, not mold remediation.
This standard is for the restoration company employee who does a couple of biohazard abatement jobs a year. During all the other times that employee is cleaning carpets, performing fire and smoke remediation, water damage remediation, or upholstery cleaning. This standard is for the part-timer, not the full-time professional.