The fact that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency created an emergency protocol in case of damaging or breaking this light bulb tell us how dangerous they are actually. German scientists discovered that when these light bulbs are broken indoor, they release a large amount of poison gas.
Conditions Caused by Energy Efficient Light Bulbs
- Inability to concentrate
Because these light bulbs contain mercury, they can be dangerous to pregnant women and children, since mercury is a potent neurotoxin. It can damage the nervous system, kidneys and liver, and lead to anxiety, insomnia and even cancer. Phenol, Styrene, Naphthalene are also contained in these light bulbs.
Everyone knows that UV-C radiation is very dangerous for our skin and eyes, and since energy saving lamps emit it, tissue damage is an inevitable consequence. Even though we are saving our money and energy, our health is at stake, and that’s more important.
The Official Procedure after Breaking a Bulb
This is what you should do, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:
Before You Start Cleaning
- Have everyone leave the room
- Leave windows and doors open for 10 minutes
- If you have the central forced air heating or air-conditioning system, shut it off.
Collecting Materials for Cleaning
- Sticky tape
- A glass jar with a metal lid or a sealable plastic bag
- Disposable wet wipes
- Never vacuum, since it can spread mercury all over the room.
- When collecting broken glass and powder be very careful not to leave anything behind. You can use duct tape to collect remaining fragments and powder.
- Put everything into a glass jar or a plastic bag.
- Place everything you used to clean outside, and avoid leaving any remaining of the light bulb in the room.
- Find the nearest recycling center and leave disposals to them, but if you are not able to find them, leave it in the trash.
- If you can, leave heating off for few hours, and try not to enter the room during that time.