Friday last day to drop off mercury at Columbia/Boone County health department facility

Thursday, February 26, 2009 | 11:14 a.m. CST

COLUMBIA — The state Department of Natural Resources will boil down its mercury disposal program at 5 p.m. Friday.

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services has the most local drop-off site at its facility located at 1005 W. Worley St. There are 11 others in mid-Missouri.

The DNR will take the materials to Jefferson City, where they will be recycled and properly disposed of by a state contractor.

The health department will only accept properly packaged mercury-containing instruments, which include thermometers, blood pressure cuffs and thermostats. Individuals and non-profit agencies planning to dispose of their mercury products must wrap them in two zip-top bags and transport them in a sealed container, such as a coffee can or margarine tub. Residents must call the health department before they make their drops.

The health department also advises people not to leave their items at the facility should it be closed. The department will offer to pick up materials for people who are uncomfortable transporting them.

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