In the bio-recovery industry, these words have never rung more true. There is a natural intrigue that makes you wonder and want to know what happens behind the distinctive yellow tape that separates you from the crime scene.

Crime scene cleaning firms have been portrayed on television as well as the big screen. You may have seen the documentary that runs on a regular basis on the Discovery Channel that spotlights Ron Gospodarski’s firm in New York City, Bio Recovery Corporation. This is a well-produced documentary that takes you inside the workings of a bio-recovery firm.

Last year Samuel L. Jackson stared in a movie titled “The Cleaner.” In the film we see Jackson’s character coming into the office every morning, going to the fax machine and collecting the requests from local law enforcement on scenes to go and clean up.

Wouldn’t that be great if the real business worked like that?

Earlier this year, you may have caught “Sunshine Cleaners” which portrays two sisters struggling to make ends meet who open up their own crime scene cleanup company. This movie, even with Hollywood’s spin, was pretty much on target.

One of my personal favorites is Marty, the rambunctious crime scene cleaner on “CSI.” Marty is a little bit on the bold and brash side of life, but I liked when they introduced his character by asking him where his American Bio-Recovery Association patch was. Honest. Catch the rerun.

In today’s world of economic hardship, it is projected that there will be a rise in the start up of small businesses. Americans are survivors, and we look for opportunity to provide for our families. We all see the sensationalism surrounding the bio-recovery industry, but this is one industry in which you cannot afford to take short cuts.

You need training, proper and good training, from a sanctioned school and instructor. It is sad, but in some states all you need is $20 to get yourself some business cards, run through the garage and put some makeshift tools together, go into the garden and grab the garden sprayer used for killing weeds, put it all in back of the family minivan with some magnetic decals and your good to go.

So, what’s wrong with this picture? First of all, it is a reality; this is what some of the masses are doing to start a business. Second, you have individuals mixing cleaning chemicals, more than likely bleach with weed-killer residue. Not such a good combination. They are probably also using a painter’s dusk mask, which is not adequate protection from the vapors.

Third and most sad is the use of the family minivan. A call comes in for a suicide on a Saturday afternoon, the cleanup takes place and the medical waste is hauled off in black contractor bags headed for the local landfill.

Yes, this is wrong in all kinds of ways, but they used the family minivan for transporting the medical waste, the same van that will probably be loaded up with the family for church the next morning. Maybe they will use it for grocery shopping that evening after the clean up.

Cross contamination, anyone?

Recently a company was cited for dumping medical waste in a roll of container behind a shopping center on the east coast. Workers showed up the next morning to find that their roll off had been used and was partially full, so they climbed in and opened the bags to look for evidence of who had used it.

Needless to say, the local police were called and, initially, the scene was treated as a possible homicide. In the end, the company representative was arrested. Not only did the bio-recovery firm have to pay for the expenses for a state-approved company and the medical expenses of the men who had climbed into the dumpster, but it was fined by the state EPA. It is rumored that the fines were in excess of $55,000.

In the end, it all comes down to three simple words: education, education, education. For more about ABRA go to or call (888) 979-2272.