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The Wussification of America

From the Arizona Republic, presented without comment:

Phoenix fire vehicles, including some hazardous-materials units, responded to a small mercury spill at Mountain Pointe High School Tuesday afternoon. No one "complained of medical problems" or was transported to a hospital, said Mark Faulkner, Phoenix Fire Department division chief for the public affairs.

At about 1:30 p.m. a call came to the Fire Department about a "dime-size spill of mercury" on the campus at 4201 E. Knox Road in Ahwatukee Foothills, Faulkner said.

The mercury was in a science laboratory but how it spilled is unknown. It could have been part of an experiment or possibly a thermometer cracked, Faulkner said.

Posted on April 29, 2008 at 10:02 PM | Permalink


When I were a kid. we was playing wit da mercury in these hands here and I turnd out good!

Seriously though, I used to break old thermometers so that I could play with the mercury. The only need for the fire department was to cool off by butt after being spanked for breaking thermometers. :)

Posted by: Rob | Apr 30, 2008 6:03:53 AM

Me too; I remember in chemistry class we got to play with small beakerfulls of mercury. I remember sticking my finger into it to see what it felt like.

Still alive at 50...

Posted by: bob prangnell | Apr 30, 2008 6:21:57 AM

Oh teh noes!!!!!

Posted by: ParatrooperJJ | Apr 30, 2008 7:11:56 AM

One of my dad's favorite stories is how when he used to go to the dentist as a kid, the dentist would give him a little dish of mercury to play with to keep him distracted. He said he would usually end up spilling it on himself :)

Posted by: Captain Obviousness | Apr 30, 2008 7:39:11 AM

The kids were in more danger from the exhaust emissions of the fire trucks than they were from the mercury.

"No one complainted of medical problems." -- That comment cracked me up. It takes years for organic mercury poisoning to cause symptoms. Metallic mercury isn't toxic unless you warm it and breath the vapors.

Posted by: Dr. T | Apr 30, 2008 5:28:13 PM

Dr. T you beat me to it. I was going to say the only way this would be dangerous is if one of the kids licked it off the floor.

Posted by: scraphoops | Apr 30, 2008 5:49:47 PM

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