On Wednesday, February 27, an officer from the North Thurston County Public School District called EPA requesting assistance for assessing and cleaning up a mercury spill which had occurred in a science classroom in Salish Middle School. The origin and total volume of the spilled mercury was unknown, but suspected to be a small amount from a thermometer. Mercury beads had been observed to be in a teacher's desk drawer, and had also been spilled on top of the desk.
EPA immediately mobilized OSC Jeffrey Fowlow and the EPA START contractor to the site to investigate and assess the incident, and conduct air monitoring and removal as appropriate.
Numerous mercury recovery and mitigation techniques were employed to reduce mercury concentrations to well below the ATSDR recommended levels for normal school operations. START and EPA responders demobilized by 2330 hours that night.