Museum Handbook: Primer on Disaster Preparedness
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The safest time to clean materials is after they have been dried. If water-damage is the result of a river flood then the following might, under certain circumstances, be considered. The Florence experience demonstrated that the best time to remove mud was after the books were dry. However some books did benefit from partial cleaning in the wet state.

If adequate assistance is available, mud deposits on books which will not be further damaged by water may be washed off in clean, running water. Closed books may be held, one at a time, under water and the excess mud removed with a hose connected to a fine spray head. Similar washing should not be attempted with opened volumes, manuscripts, art on paper, or photographs.

Rubbing and brushing should be avoided, and no effort be made to remove oil stains. Anything which is hard to remove is better left until after drying, when techniques for removal can be worked out during the restoration stage. In some cases, printed books bound in cloth or paper can be left immersed in clean running water for as long as two weeks. Although this should be avoided if possible, it is preferable when the only alternative is leaving such books in warm, humid air while awaiting attention.