What to do if a lamp containing mercury breaks
The only time you as a consumer may be exposed to mercury is if the glass of the lamp is cracked or broken. If this happens, follow these rules to minimize your exposure:
- Don't PANIC! Remember that a fluorescent lamp contains only a very small amount of mercury.
- Be careful not to cut yourself on shards of glass.
- If the lamp was broken in a luminaire, make sure to disconnect the power to avoid the risk of electric shock.
- Gather up the fragments of the lamp, sweeping them up if possible.
- Use a disposable towel or sticky tape to remove small pieces or dust.
- Use a vacuum cleaner only if the surface leaves no alternative (carpet). Dispose of the vacuum bag containing the lamp fragments.
- Remove the fragments of the lamp from the inside of your home, i.e. by placing them in a bag and carrying them outside.
- Ventilate the room.
- Dispose of both cracked and non-functioning lamps correctly.