2-Cholrobenzalmalonitrile (CS.) is the chemical compound that makes up and defines tear gas. A non-lethal (controversial) chemical outlawed since 1993 globally for warfare is legal for domestic -control scenarios. This means while armed military use flash-bangs, police are using tear gas. CS is often used in situations where law enforcement deems their lives or public lives are in danger. Unruly concerts, major sporting events, and violet protesters would all be considered normal safe uses of tear gas. Tear gas is recommended to be used in open air environments. This is mainly due to the fact that tear gas is mostly harmless when wet and tear gas used outdoors will naturally dissipate and disappear over time. Tear gas in powder form or CS2 has a wide range of effects on people: vomiting, burning skin, runny sinuses, coughing, difficulty breathing, and burning, watery eyes.
Inside Use of CS2 is a Different Story
In extreme cases tear gas is used indoors. Effects on people are the same as if used outdoors. Indoor tear gas can be virtually impossible to clean-up on one’s own. Since everything inside a building is contaminated cleaning can be very tedious and cost prohibitive. Fortunately at 11th Hour Inc. we have an established procedure for removing tear gas safely, completely, and as inexpensively as possible. The majority of inside tear gas clean-up cases are covered by homeowners or business insurance.
Removal of Tear Gas
Clothes, shoes, and anything of cloth/porous materials is recommended to be thrown away. Multiple washes may remove the tear gas or may not due to the porous nature of the materials and how heat makes any tear gas remnants reactive again. In one instance, a woman took shoes out of her house that were saturated with tear gas. After two hours of wearing the shoes she experienced a burning sensation caused by residuals in the shoes. She ripped them off her feet, and put on sandals. What happened was the sweat and body heat from her feet was enough to make the tear gas reactive and basically gave her a chemical burn. Most tear gas symptoms go away in a couple of hours and she was fine shortly after removing the shoes. Anything we cannot salvage (like shoes) gets documented and thrown away. Everything else gets moved into a clean area to be cleaned with a tear gas neutralizer. Once the house or rooms are neutralized and tear gas free the personal property is moved back inside. The majority of indoors tear gas cleanups range from a few days to a couple weeks to completely remove the residue, and make the property safe for re-entry.
If you are in Illinois and needing tear gas cleaned up; call us, the certified crime scene cleaners at 773-683-1308. We are here 24/7 to answer your questions, explain our process, and set up an appointment. More information is also available at info@11thHourClean.com.
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