Safe Mercury cleanup is important.
Mercury can be found in a variety of household items. When liquid is spilled, it forms droplets that can accumulate in the tiniest places; these droplets can emit vapors into the air that we cannot see or smell. Mercury vapor in the air can be very toxic. Families have been poisoned from mercury spills in the home which have not been properly cleaned up. Children are at highest risk.
The small amount of mercury in fever thermometers, thermostats and fluorescent bulbs is not likely to cause serious health problems, but it should be cleaned up.
When a Mercury spill occurs, NEVER do this:
NEVER use an ordinary vacuum or shop vacuum to clean up mercury. The vacuum will put mercury vapor into the air and increase the likelihood of human exposure. the vacuum cleaner will be contaminated and have to be disposed of properly with the spilled mercury.
NEVER use a broom or a paint brush to clean up mercury. It will break up the mercury into smaller beads and spread them around
NEVER pour or allow mercury to go down a drain.
NEVER allow people whose shoes or clothing may be contaminated with mercury to walk around.
Steps to take before cleaning up a spill:
Contain the spill. Dike mercury (using rags or other disposable items) to prevent spreading. Divert from drains, cracks and crevices.
Clean up methods:
ANYTHING which comes in contact with mercury should be disposed of!!!
Push small mercury beads together with a card, stiff paper or squeegee to form larger droplets and push them into a plastic dust pan or use an eye dropper to pick up the balls of mercury. Collect all mercury into a leak-tight plastic bag or wide-mouth sealable plastic container.
If you need to dispose of contaminated items due to a mercury spill, please contact our office at (765) 456-2274. This facility is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8am to 4pm and Wednesday from 1pm to 4pm. We are closed weekends and major holidays. This facility is for Howard County, Indiana households only. Business waste is prohibited.