Because of concerns for mercury, many manufacturers and retailers of thermometers have stopped producing and selling mercury-containing glass thermometers. However, some older glass thermometers in homes, businesses, or schools may contain mercury. When these thermometers break, there will be some broken glass and small amounts of mercury may sometimes be released. The released liquid mercury will appear as small, bright or glimmering, silver-colored beads, droplets, or balls. Children and pets sometimes are attracted to these bright shiny beads or droplets and want to touch them. But it is very important that they do not do so, because mercury can be absorbed by contact with skin or through accidental ingestion, such as can occur from hand to mouth contact of young children. Therefore, CHILDREN AND PETS ARE ADVISED TO STAY AWAY FROM THE AREA UNTIL MERCURY CLEANUP AND DISPOSAL IS COMPLETE AND ANY BROKEN GLASS OR LIQUID MERCURY BEADS OR DROPLETS ARE REMOVED FROM THE AREA.
ADULTS ARE ENCOURAGED TO FOLLOW THESE STEPS FOR CLEANING UP BROKEN GLASS THERMOMETERS CONTAINING MERCURY, which is the most frequently encountered mercury spill or release in homes and schools:
MDE has a number of additional web pages on mercury with helpful information. For a complete listing, see the MDE mercury pages.
Additional links for mercury web page:
EPA mercury website linkwww.epa.gov/mercury
ATSDR TOXFAQSTM Mercurywww.atsdr.cdc.gov/tfacts46.html
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