Theodore's World: Mercury Vapor Released From Broken Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs Can Exceed Safe Exposure Levels ~ Thanks To Idiot “environmentalists"!!

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July 07, 2011

Mercury Vapor Released From Broken Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs Can Exceed Safe Exposure Levels ~ Thanks To Idiot “environmentalists"!!

Clearing Fluorescent Light Bulbs

Mercury Vapor Released from Broken Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs Can Exceed Safe Exposure Levels for Humans

New Rochelle, NY, July, 6, 2011—Once broken, a compact fluorescent light bulb continuously releases mercury vapor into the air for weeks to months, and the total amount can exceed safe human exposure levels in a poorly ventilated room, according to study results reported in Environmental Engineering Science, a peer-reviewed online only journal published monthly by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

The amount of liquid mercury (Hg) that leaches from a broken compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) is lower than the level allowed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), so CFLs are not considered hazardous waste. However, Yadong Li and Li Jin, Jackson State University (Jackson, MS) report that the total amount of Hg vapor released from a broken CFL over time can be higher than the amount considered safe for human exposure.

They document their findings in the article “Environmental Release of Mercury from Broken Compact Fluorescent Lamps.”

As people can readily inhale vapor-phase mercury, the authors suggest rapid removal of broken CFLs and adequate ventilation, as well as suitable packaging to minimize the risk of breakage of CFLs and to retain Hg vapor if they do break, thereby limiting human exposure.


Check out THESE Experience of the bulb blowing up! ~ Wild Thing

The American Thinker

*** A compact fluorescent light (CFL) on the ceiling burst and started a fire in a home in Hornell, N.Y. December 23, 2010. "Those are the lights everybody's been telling us to use," said Joe Gerych, Steuben County Fire Inspector. "It blew up like a bomb. It spattered all over." Fire Chief Mike Robbins said the blaze destroyed the room where the fire started and everything in it, and the rest of the house suffered smoke and water damage. The Arkport Village Fire Department as well as the North Hornell Fire Department required about 15 minutes to put out the fire.

*** "Bulb explodes without warning," reported, May 21, 2010. "Tom and Nancy Heim were watching TV recently, when Tom decided to turn on the floor lamp next to his recliner chair. 'I heard this loud pop...I saw what I thought was smoke, coming out of the top of the floor lamp,' says Tom. Nancy suddenly found glass in her lap. She says, 'I did not see it. I just heard it, and I noticed I had glass on me.'"

*** On February 23, 2011, TV NewsChannel 5 in Tennessee covered "a newly-released investigators' report that blames a February 12 fatal fire in Gallatin on one of those CFL bulbs." Ben Rose, an attorney for the rehabilitative facility in which Douglas Johnson, 45, perished, said, "This result is consistent with our own private investigation. ...We have heard reports of similar fires being initiated by CFLs across the country."

*** "GE Helical 13 Watt light bulb. After only 6 months of use. This bulb started making funny noises and flickering... Finally, exploded on my kitchen table." -- Charles of South Webster, OH January 30, 2010 .

*** My GE 20W Helical bulb in my 1/2 bathroom caught on fire on 5/3/10. The bulb snapped and glowed very brightly then caught on fire....The bulb was suppose to last 5 years but it was only about a year or so old" -- Chantelle of Danville, PA May 15, 2010.

*** My 80 year old mother turned on her reading lamp and the bulb exploded and the lamp shade caught fire." -- M. of Lahaina, HI March 30, 2010.

*** "I had a desk lamp CFL burn up right in front of me. Switched it on and tiny sparks were emanating like a Van de Graaff generator. Quickly switched it off; the plastic around the ballast was cracked and smoking" -- Nisshin, November 30, 2008.

*** October 5, 2010 the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported: "Trisonic Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs Recalled Due to Fire Hazard" because of four incidents. It's official notice states: "Hazard: light bulb can overheat and catch fire."

Concerns about the toxic mercury in CFLs are downplayed by the bulbs' advocates, but they shouldn't be.

Never use a vacuum cleaner to clean up mercury... The vacuum will put mercury into the air and increase exposure." You will also be looking at the cost of a new vacuum cleaner, because the Maine DEP research found it "difficult to impossible" to decontaminate a vacuum even with the advantage of sophisticated instruments the homeowner doesn't have.

Never use a broom to clean up mercury. It will break the mercury into smaller droplets and spread them.

Never pour mercury down a drain. It may lodge in the plumbing and cause future problems during plumbing repairs...or cause pollution of the septic tank or sewage treatment plant.

Never wash clothing or other items that have come in direct contact with mercury in a washing machine, because mercury may contaminate the machine and/or pollute sewage.


Wild Thing's comment.........

These bulbs are beyond stupid...dangerous and stupid.

As most of you know I have a thing against environmentalists. They have done more damage to our country then they have done any good. IMO

I would love to see Republicans repeal the incandescent light bulb ban. This stupid law was passed in 2007 ( Bush was president then ).... HOW COULD HE EVEN SIGN THIS INTO LAW ? Did the Democrat majority of that period send him a bill that was packed with so much stuff it slipped by, or did he know he was signing this into law? If the latter is the case, surely he didn’t think this through and didn’t know how much mercury the bulbs contain.

Posted by Wild Thing at July 7, 2011 05:50 AM


I will not use CFLs (I call them "curley flourescent lamps") inside my home because the illumination is unpleasant, they cause interference to AM and shortwave radio reception, and the mercury hazard of which I have been aware. I have used them outdoors in porch lights and garages and other less-accessable locations where a putative advantage in life expectancy and operating cost exists. I have found that the life of these "bulbs" varies and although some have lasted for a long time, others have failed within a few weeks. I plan on eliminating the ones I have ASAP due to the fire hazzard. I will revert to incandescent bulbs as long as I can find them (hoarding)although (expensive) LED replacements do OK in some applications. And I do believe that Bush II knowingly signed the anti-incandescent bill into law. He was fuzzy on the "global-warming' hoax and at the end just wanted people to not hate him...

Posted by: Willy at July 7, 2011 10:52 AM

My mother had cats and a finished basement that one of the cats knocked over a lamp with a CFL bulb which broke. It cost $1600 to clean a room with venal tile floor and wood paneling walls. We had to clean commercially because we wanted to sell the house and the safe levels cost that.

Posted by: Avitar at July 7, 2011 04:07 PM

Thank you, Al Gore.

Posted by: Anonymous at July 7, 2011 06:42 PM

Willy, thank you for the added information. Interesting about how they effect AM and shortwave radio reception. I agree too that Bush 11 was fuzzy on global warming.

Posted by: Wild Thing at July 8, 2011 03:39 AM

Avitar, oh my gosh, and such a huge cost added to everything else. Thank you Avitar for sharing about your mom's home and that experience.

Posted by: Wild Thing at July 8, 2011 03:41 AM

Anonymous, ditto that.

Posted by: Wild Thing at July 8, 2011 03:42 AM

July 9, 2011
Yesterday I was downstairs in the laundry room, when I switched on the basement light in the laundry room, the light flickered then dimmed (the day before, the light became very bright); when I look at the light fixture, there was vapor emitting from that area. I removed the fluorescent bulb with gloved hands and replaced the bulb. I wrapped the old bulb in a towel and placed it in a plastic bag until I can contact the Office of Environmental Protection on Monday. In another covered light fixted the daylight fluorescent bulb is giving of a PINK light. It is in front of a 1/4 red wall, the other bulbs in front of the wall did not change colors. What caused this to happen?

Posted by: Dorothy at July 9, 2011 01:07 PM