This week Hank Ryan investigated flu cleaning services who claim that they can rid ones home from H1N1. Ryan sets up a hidden camera and has a salesman come in to give a estimation on how much money it will cost to rid the home of H1N1. After doing some research Ryan realizes that these salesmen from the cleaning companies are lying. Ryan interviews Dr. Lauren Smith from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health who states that it is unnecessary to have someone come in to decontaminate ones home. Ryan finds out that to get H1N1 one needs to come into direct contact with the virus and that the virus can only live 2 to 8 hours on a contaminated surface. So as the salesman is making his pitch in front of the hidden camera he lies by saying he will come back next week and kill everything there…well this is impossible since everything would already be dead by next week without his help. The salesman was then asked if the place would be sterilized in which he said that it would after he did the full cleaning. Dr. Smith said that’s not a reasonable thing to promise and it’s something that could not be accomplished. Ryan states that the final estimate for the job would have cost $500 according to the salesman. Ryan then finds other services who are a rip off as they say that sanitization should be done every season and another company says that the virus lasts forever unless you kill it. These companies are charging up to $1785 for their cleaning services. According to Ryan’s interviewee, Dr. Smith, it’s a waste of money. Ryan ends her package by stating that the Department of Public Health says a regular cleaning of your home is all you need to do and that doctors say the best weapon to protect against H1N1 is to wash your hands.
This investigation is very similar to Ryan’s last investigation about companies selling fraud flu products. This week Ryan stuck with the same topic but just approached it from a different angle. Perhaps Ryan thought that this was a serious topic that needed to shed light on it so she took the risk and did another report relating to H1N1. We won’t know why she chose to report on the same topic two weeks in a row until I interview her. Ryan had a good source for her investigation, a worker from the department of health, yet it would have been nice to hear another’s point of view, perhaps from one who has actually used a rip off cleaning service. Ryan did do something that I haven’t seen her do in any of her previous reports and that is set up a hidden camera catching these people lying. It added a whole other dynamic to the report as one actually witnesses this guy lying. Ryan’s competition, Channel 5 Investigation Team, investigated on topics this week such as, “Stimulus Money for Education Running out”, “Nonprofit Execs Pocket Large Salaries Perks” and “Toyota Faces another Recall”. A variety of topics done by Channel 5 but none are about the swine flu. Overall, even though Ryan’s report was kind of a repeat from last week’s report, she provides some helpful information that could save people big bucks.