San Francisco Environment Department

I broke a fluorescent light bulb in my baby’s room. I heard there is mercury in the white powder inside the tube. What should I do?!

Broken fluorescent tubes and compact fluorescent bulbs DO contain mercury, a toxic metal.  Follow the EPA’s guidelines for a safe clean up.

Next, put all the broken glass, white powder from the tube, and the paper towel you wiped the area with, in a ziplock bag or sealed container.  Call (415) 330-1405 to schedule a FREE home pickup or bring it yourself to San Francisco’s permanent household hazardous waste collection facility (hours and directions).  Sorry – broken fluorescents can’t be accepted at neighborhood drop-off sites, and should not go in the blue, green, or black bin.

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