For those who wonder the dangers - (and yes we played with it as kids as well)...
Long term exposure leads to symptoms that used to be ID's as the Mad Hatter's disease, since hatters used elemental mercury...Exposure can lead to:Symptoms of methylmercury poisoning
(organic - found in "foods")
In addition to the subtle impairments noted above, symptoms of methylmercury poisoning may include;
impairment of the peripheral vision;
disturbances in sensations ("pins and needles" feelings, usually in the hands, feet, and around the mouth);
lack of coordination of movements;
impairment of speech, hearing, walking; and
muscle weakness.Symptoms of elemental mercury effects
This instance and what we played with
Symptoms include these:
emotional changes (e.g., mood swings, irritability, nervousness, excessive shyness);
neuromuscular changes (such as weakness, muscle atrophy, twitching);
disturbances in sensations;
changes in nerve responses;
performance deficits on tests of cognitive function.Symptoms of high exposures to inorganic mercury
Symptoms of high exposures to inorganic mercury include:
skin rashes and dermatitis;
mental disturbances; and
I wonder... what was the REAL threat to the public, with this box of thermometers?
And what was the cost of the "clean up"?
Haz-mat cleanups are not cheap...