Extreme Cleaning: Behind the scenes at one of the most gruesome jobs in Middle Georgia
When WGXA reports on death and crime, viewers get the straight facts of each case, but many times the gruesome details of what goes on behind the scenes are left out.
So, what happens when a dead body is left undiscovered? And who cleans up the mess when somebody finally shows up? The answer is the extreme cleaners.
To the cleaning techs from the X-Treme Cleaners Crime & Death scene Cleaning Services, blood and guts and decomposing bodies are just a few of the hazards on the job.
In a quiet Macon neighborhood X-Treme Cleaners Branch Manager Scott Griffin suits up in full HAZMAT gear as he prepares to enter a home where the remnants of decomposed body await him.,
After being in the business 20 years Griffin knows he can handle any situation, but the job isn't for everyone.
"There's a lot of people that have tried to do this ... they go in and come right back out ... it's real ... this is our Halloween everyday," Griffin said.
The furniture in the house has been removed and the carpet all torn out, now all that remains from a suicide found weeks after death is bodily fluid stained into the floor.
"The body breaks down if it sits for quite a while, this suicide was a gun shot in a bed, went through the bed, went through the box springs, went through the carpet, went through the padding, now it's into the sub floor," Griffin said.
Bodily fluid and a nasty odor aren't the only signs the home needs extreme cleaning. Dead flies and maggots adorn windows in the bedroom where the body was found, and Griffin was able to point out two corners in the dining room, where the owners two dogs had also died after living on their own for weeks presumably dining on their owners corpse.
"Some situations, it is kind of routine, I guess is the only word I can come up with, but there's no way to really accept the fact of what's happened,” Griffin said."A lot of times we have hoarder houses where a person may have passed away from natural causes, and they may have four or five dogs and it's very common."
Restoring homes after forgotten suicides and grisly murders is only one part of the X-Treme Cleaners business which operates in nine states all over the U.S.
The other part of the business involves clean-up of a different kind, and a lot of training, usually done at the X-Treme Cleaners offices in Perry.
"We're constantly doing continuing education, there's classes and courses all over the country," Griffin said.
Griffin and his employees are trained to dismantle meth labs, which can be deadly due to the high volume of combustible chemicals.
"Just constantly learning new techniques, new chemicals and processes," Griffin said.
Griffin says during his career as an extreme cleaner he's cleaned up after more than 100 dead bodies, including 40 scenes where the body was badly decomposed.
While he says he never really gets used to it, the service is important to the families of the victims, and if he can handle it he will do his best.