Cleaning Up Mercury Spills If small amounts of metallic mercury are spilled, be very careful in cleaning them up. Do not use the vacuum cleaner. The best solution is to clean it up with one sheet of paper to carefully roll beads of mercury onto a second sheet of paper, or pick up with an eyedropper. After picking up mercury, put it in a sturdy plastic bag or airtight disposable plastic container. Glass containers can be used, but run the risk of breaking again. Paper and eye dropper should also be bagged up. Take the mercury and contaminated materials to the household hazardous waste facility. Try to ventilate the room with outside air, and close the room off from the rest of the home. Using fans helps. Ventilate for a minimum of one hour. If the mercury spills onto a carpet, try to collect the mercury beads. Do not vacuum.
If you cannot recover all the mercury call the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease registry (ATSDR).