CIRI Releases COVID-19 Decontamination Guidelines for Built Environments

Corona Virus In Red Background - Microbiology And Virology Concept - 3d Rendering

GRANVILLE, Ohio—June 3, 2020—The Cleaning Industry Research Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to unbiased, peer-reviewed research for the professional cleaning and disaster restoration industries, recently issued guidance for addressing COVID-19 in built environments. CIRI’s COVID-19 decontamination guidelines detail the scientific understanding and best practices for cleaning and disinfecting hard surfaces in non-healthcare settings.

Developed by CIRI’s Science Advisory Committee members, “Guidance for Decontamination of the Built Environment: Cleaning, Disinfection, Worker Protection, and Post Cleaning and Remediation Assessment,” provides an overview of what’s known about COVID-19, including its biology, epidemiology, pathology, and current modes of transmission. Within this framework, the authors use peer-reviewed research to outline recommendations around health-based cleaning and disinfection practices.

“In the absence of a governing standard to direct cleaning protocols, this guidance is designed to provide cleaning professionals with easily identifiable best practices for cleaning and disinfection during the pandemic,” said John Downey, executive director of CIRI. “It is our hope that organizations throughout the cleaning and disaster restoration industries use this heavily sourced, science-based guidance to inform their cleaning and disinfection protocols.”

Within the COVID-19 decontamination guidelines, cleaning and restoration professionals will find best practices and resources concerning worker protection, decontamination, cleaning, disinfection, and post-cleaning assessments and measurement. Of specific note, the guidelines advise against the use of fogging or misting machines as an effective means of disinfection. Researchers cite a 2013 letter written by Steven Bradbury, PhD, director of the U.S. EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs. The letter highlights issues with the efficacy of the application method.

“With so many claims being made around certain cleaning products and practices, it’s more important than ever that we start with sound, documented science as a basis for our cleaning programs,” added Downey. “From gyms to hotels, schools to retail shops, people want to know that it’s safe to visit indoor spaces as communities begin to reopen. Using science to inform our cleaning protocols will help us ensure this.”

“Guidance for Decontamination of the Built Environment: Cleaning, Disinfection, Worker Protection, and Post Cleaning and Remediation Assessment” is available free of charge on the CIRI website at

The Cleaning Industry Research Institute (CIRI) is the only independent institute focused on cleaning and building maintenance research. Its purpose is to improve cleaning and restoration outcomes and indoor environmental quality (IEQ) for all indoor environments. Today CIRI is a 501.c.3 nonprofit scientific, educational, and research institute recognized for its cleaning science and research programs. CIRI does not compete with existing trade organizations or associations; rather, it serves a unique, complementary role and seeks to work with leading industry groups. For more information, visit

Cleanfax Staff

Cleanfax provides cleaning and restoration professionals with information designed to help them manage and grow their businesses.

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