So, my floating thermometer broke while cooling off my wort and I didn't realize it until about an hour after I had pitched the yeast and fermentation had definitely already started.
At first I freaked out and thought I might have leaked mercury into my wort and almost threw out the batch, but then I figured out that the thermometer was lead. Alcohol based thermometers apparently have little lead beads at the bottom so the thermometer will float.
I was wary to go back into the fermenting wort and scoop out the lead pellets during fermentation so I've been letting it ferment for 5 days now. Fermentation has been strong (and it's still going) and there are no signs of any ill-effect yet. If anything fermentation seems a little more vigorous than usual.
That said, I'm not very interested in poisoning myself with lead when I drink this. When I rack this batch to secondary I'll be able to remove the lead pellets, but will that be enough? Is the alcohol enough to kill off any bad bacterias? Any other precautions I should take?