Star Express Cleaning Services

safety tips

Star Express Cleaning

…Cleaning must be undertaken at least once per day. Cleaning should be more frequent if surfaces become visibly dirty, there is a spill, or if they are touched by a different people (for example, if your workplace has a high volume of workers, customers or visitors that are likely to touch surfaces such as EFTPOS machines, lift buttons and door handles)

How to clean and disinfect

Cleaning means to physically remove germs (bacteria and viruses), dirt and grime from surfaces using a detergent and water solution. A detergent is a surfactant that is designed to break up oil and grease with the use of water. Anything labelled as a detergent will work.

Disinfecting means using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. It’s important to clean before disinfecting because dirt and grime can reduce the ability of disinfectants to kill germs. The following disinfectants are suitable for use on hard surfaces (that is, surfaces where any spilt liquid pools, and does not soak in): alcohol in a concentration of at least 70%, chlorine bleach in a concentration of 1000 parts per million, oxygen bleach, or wipes and sprays that contain quaternary ammonium compounds. These chemicals will be labelled as ‘disinfectant’ on the packaging and must be diluted or used following the instructions on the packaging to be effective.

Cleaning should start with the cleanest surface first, progressively moving towards the dirtiest surface. When surfaces are cleaned, they should be left as dry as possible to reduce the risk of slips and falls, as well as spreading of viruses and bacteria through droplets.

Before a surface is disinfected, it is important it is cleaned first because dirt and grime can reduce the ability of disinfectants to kill germs. Disinfectant may not kill the virus if the surface has not been cleaned with a detergent first.

The packaging or manufacturer’s instructions will outline the correct way to use disinfectant. Disinfectants require time to be effective at killing viruses. If no time is specified, the disinfectant should be left for ten minutes before removing.

You should provide your workers with suitable cleaning and disinfecting products and personal protective equipment, and ensure they are trained on how to use them.

Our cleaning guide provides more information on cleaning and disinfecting, including for specific surfaces.

 

What is the difference between cleaning and disinfecting?

Cleaning means to physically remove germs (bacteria and viruses), dirt and grime from surfaces using a detergent and water solution. A detergent is a surfactant that is designed to break up oil and grease with the use of water.

Disinfecting means using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. It’s important to clean before disinfecting because dirt and grime can reduce the ability of disinfectants to kill germs. The following disinfectants are suitable for use on hard surfaces (that is, surfaces where any spilt liquid pools, and does not soak in): alcohol in a concentration of at least 70%, chlorine bleach in a concentration of 1000 parts per million, oxygen bleach, or wipes and sprays that contain quaternary ammonium compounds. These chemicals will be labelled as ‘disinfectant’ on the packaging and must be diluted or used following the instructions on the packaging to be effective.

 

Which areas should be cleaned and disinfected, and how often?

Any surfaces that are frequently touched should be prioritised for cleaning, such as door handles, counters, phones, EFTPOS machines and workplace amenities, such as toilets. Any surfaces that are visibly dirty, or have a spill, should be cleaned as soon as they are identified, regardless of when they were last cleaned.

You should regularly clean and disinfect surfaces that many people touch. At a minimum, workplaces should be cleaned at least once daily. If your workplace has many customers or others entering each day, more frequent cleaning and disinfection is recommended. If your workplace is only attended by the same small work crew each day and involves little interaction with other people, routine disinfection in addition to daily cleaning may not be needed.

 

Which areas should I prioritise for cleaning?

Any surfaces that are frequently touched should be prioritised for cleaning and disinfection. These include tabletops, door handles, light switches, desks, toilets, taps, TV remotes, kitchen surfaces and cupboard handles. You should also prioritise cleaning and disinfecting surfaces which are visibly soiled (dirty) and which are used by multiple people (e.g. trolleys, checkouts, EFTPOS machines).

 

How often should I clean?

Regular cleaning is key to minimising the build-up of dust and dirt and allows for effective disinfecting when required.

Cleaning must be undertaken at least once per day. Cleaning should be more frequent if surfaces become visibly dirty, there is a spill, or if they are touched by a different people (for example, if your workplace has a high volume of workers, customers or visitors that are likely to touch surfaces such as EFTPOS machines, lift buttons and door handles). If your workplace operates in shifts, it should be cleaned between shifts. If equipment is shared between workers, it may also be cleaned between uses, where practicable.

For more information, refer to our cleaning guide.

 

What if there is a case of COVID-19 in my workplace?

If you have a case of COVID-19 in the workplace, your state or territory health authority should provide you with advice on what you need to do in your workplace. Follow their instructions.

Your workplace will need to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before people can return to the workplace.

  • Using an ISO accredited cleaner is not required.
  • Fogging is not required and is not recommended by the Australian Government Department of Health for routine cleaning against COVID-19
  • Swabbing surfaces following disinfection is not required.

For more information on what to do if there is a case of COVID-19 see our infographic What to do if a worker has COVID-19.

 

How often should I disinfect?

You should regularly clean and disinfect surfaces that many people touch. You should consider disinfecting frequently touched surfaces at least once daily.

All surfaces should be cleaned with detergent prior to disinfection. Alternatively, you may be able to do a 2-in-1 clean and disinfection by using a combined detergent and disinfectant.

 

Does every surface need to be cleaned?

You don’t need to clean every surface. The virus is transmitted by breathing in droplets produced by an infected person coughing or sneezing, or contact with contaminated surfaces, so you only need to clean surfaces that are touched. This is true whether the touching is deliberate (e.g. a door knob) or incidental (e.g. brushing a door when reaching for the door knob). There are some surfaces that are never touched (e.g. ceilings and cracks and crevices in machinery) and these do not need to be cleaned and disinfected.

 

Do I need to clean areas or equipment daily if no one has entered the area or used the equipment recently?

Research suggests that the virus can survive on soft, porous surfaces (such as cardboard and fabrics) for up to 24 hours and hard surfaces such as plastic and stainless steel for up to 72 hours (three days). Any areas which have not had recent human contact, that is within the last few days, are unlikely to be a potential source of infection. You should consider this when deciding whether an area or equipment needs to be cleaned and disinfected.

 

What about workers’ personal items?

You should instruct your workers to clean personal items used in the workplace such as glasses and phones regularly using disinfectant wipes.