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Mercury discovered in western Lincoln County

Staff Writer

Nearly three pounds of mercury were located inside a barn Tuesday on the county’s western end.
Assistant Emergency Manager for the county, Bill Summers, said residents of home on Frank Cline Road in Howards Creek were cleaning out a barn on their property when they found roughly eight liquid ounces of mercury inside two glass jars in a cabinet inside the back of the building.
They told Summers they had no idea the mercury was in there and that they had inherited the property from family.
The jars weren’t labeled, Summers said. He estimated the liquid weighed close to three pounds.
Emergency Management officials immediately contacted a local environmental company to pick up and properly dispose of the mercury on Thursday.
“We usually find it (mercury) in fairly large quantities,” Summers said.
He added that the substance is highly poisonous and can be ingested or absorbed through the eyes or any open wounds.
Summers said if vaporized, mercury also has the potential to enter heating and air ducts, contaminating an entire building.
“It can cause some pretty nasty stuff,” he said.

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