What can I do?

  • Presume mercury in objects described in this eTool.
  • Hazard label objects in storage.
  • Record hazards in a collections database.
  • When handling mercury objects:
    • Plan object moves to prevent spills.
    • Use leak proof containers to store and move objects.
    • Acquire a mercury spill kit and know how to use it.
    • Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Thin nitrile gloves are usually sufficient.
    • If a significant risk of inhalation of mercury vapour exists, enclose the source or improve ventilation. An ‘Hg’ filter mask will provide some protection.
    • Practice good hand hygiene.
    • Do not eat, drink or smoke around mercury.

Removing mercury with a pipette and waste container
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

A typical mercury spill kit for dealing with small spills
© Larry Carr