Schools - Mercury Phaseout
Over the past several years, numerous mercury spills have been documented in schools, sometimes costing as much as $250,000 to clean up. The high cost and dangers to those exposed have prompted widespread public concern about mercury. As these stories became more widely known, the incidents prompted the Michigan Legislators to take action.
According to Public Act 376 of 2000 (Enrolled Senate Bill #1262 ), Michigan schools must phase out mercury use in the classroom and in the health (nurse's) office. This law applies to liquid (free flowing) elemental mercury, as well as, mercury-containing instruments such as thermometers, barometers, manometers, and sphygmomanometers (blood pressure gauges). Schools have until 2004 to complete this process. The step-by-step Mercury Elimination Guidelines for Michigan Schools (pdf) has helpful information for completing this process.
Michigan's Schools and School Districts that have responded to MDCH as being "Mercury-Free"
Other mercury uses potentially found in the building such as in thermostats, light switches, relays or fluorescent lights, are not impacted by this legislation.
News Items: Mercury in Schools