Accidental breakage is unlikely to cause any harm. All the same it's good practice to reduce your exposure to mercury, and minimise the risk of cuts from broken glass.
- Take care to prevent injury from broken glass.
- Vacate the room and keep children and pets out of the affected area. Shut off your central air conditioning system, if you have one.
- Ventilate the room by opening the windows for at least 15 minutes before clean up.
- Do not use a vacuum cleaner - clean up wearing rubber gloves and aim to avoid creating and inhaling airborne dust as much as possible.
- On hard surfaces sweep up all particles and glass fragments with stiff cardboard and place everything, including the cardboard, in a plastic bag. Wipe the area with a damp cloth and then add that to the bag. Do not use household cleaning products.
- Use sticky tape to pick up small residual CFL pieces or powder from carpets and soft furnishings and then place in the plastic bag.
- The plastic bag should be reasonably sturdy and needs to be sealed, but it does not need to be air tight. The sealed plastic bag should be double-bagged to minimise cuts from broken glass. You must not throw the bag in your normal household rubbish - please take it to your local waste and recycling centre.
Find out more about eco bulb technology here.
Energy saving bulbs contain a small amount of mercury – just enough to cover the tip of a ballpoint pen. This is needed to generate light efficiently. Although the mercury can’t escape from a light bulb in normal use, you must be careful when recycling them.
Compact Fluorescent bulbs must not be disposed of into the normal rubbish or your household recycling bins because the mercury could escape if the bulb gets broken. In most parts of the UK, CFL bulbs can be recycled at your local waste and recycling centre. You can find the nearest recycling centre by contacting your local council.
Please check with your local store
as these can vary depending on the local council. However the facilities range from paper, aluminium, glass, clothing, carrier bags and certain types of plastics.