What should I do if I break a fluorescent bulb?

Puncture resistant gloves are recommended for cleaning up broken glass. After picking up all large fragments, wipe area thoroughly to clean any remaining glass or phosphor residue. If necessary, ventilate area to remove any remaining fine phosphor dust. After handling broken lamps, wash hands and face thoroughly. Incidental exposure to lamp contents is not harmful. The basic phosphor used in the manufacture of fluorescent lamps is a relatively inert phosphate. The small amount of mercury contained in each lamp will not cause any significant amount of airborne mercury, since most of the elemental mercury remains adhered to the phosphor surface. No adverse health effects are expected from exposure to a broken fluorescent tube.