Dear Heloise: Please inform your readers that if they break a fluorescent light bulb, they should not pick up the pieces with bare hands. Instead, wear protective gloves (that are disposable – Heloise), open the windows for ventilation and do not vacuum up any residue or small pieces of glass. The small particles should be removed with a damp paper towel. Fluorescent lamps contain a small amount of mercury. The larger, longer bulbs are more hazardous than the small, compact bulbs, but both should be cleaned up with caution. – Connie, via e-mail
Connie, this is a “hot topic,” and one worth printing. Information on disposal is a little hard to find. You should call your trash company to see if there is a collection site in your area. If there isn’t a hazardous-waste center near you, the garbage company should be able to tell you how to prepare the bulbs for proper disposal. You can also call the United States Environmental Recycling Hotline at 877-EARTH-911. – Heloise
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