The glass in my house just broke, what should I do?

By Deb Levy

You’ll need to handle glass left in a frame differently than glass that has broken out of the frame and fallen. First, you will want to check and make sure no one was injured but the glass. Get medical attention immediately if that is the case. Next, secure the area and isolate the glass that has broken out of the frame and keep people and pets away from the break area. Be especially mindful of infants, toddlers and pets who will crawl or run through the area hours later.

To clean up the broken glass, pick up the large pieces of glass only if you are wearing safety gloves. Be very, very careful of shards. Do not attempt to pick up any glass without safety gloves. Put the broken glass in a container you do not need and set it aside for disposal by the glass company you are working with. DO NOT dispose of broken glass using your normal household disposal methods. Use a high-powered vacuum to vacuum the entire area and dispose of the vacuum bag. Re-vacuum the whole area again a few hours later and dispose of that vacuum bag too using the same methods.

If the glass is still partially in the frame—say a window pane or door lite—try to secure the area to make sure no one will touch it and that it will not move until it is fixed. Never go near the glass without safety gloves and eye protection. Safety goggles are important to keep glass slivers from entering the eye. If necessary in emergency situations, you may attempt to put wide pieces of tape, such as duct or masking tape across the frame to keep the glass from falling until the glass shop arrives.

Note any special markings or coding on the glass by making a note or taking a picture as this may be helpful information in locating a replacement piece.