Delaware has provided many people with jobs in the chemical, construction, and manufacturing industries for several decades. Yet, although many of these jobs helped people earn a living a take care of their families, it came at a price. Before asbestos was regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), these industries were known to use the dangerous mineral in a variety of products, machinery, equipment, and buildings. In addition, many of the buildings that were constructed using asbestos are still intact today, which, if not regulated and monitored, can still pose hazards.
If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be able to qualify for substantial compensation. More than $30 billion has been set aside in asbestos trust funds to compensate people who’ve been injured by asbestos exposure. Fill out our form to get a free Financial Compensation Packet. You’ll learn about the top mesothelioma lawyers in Delaware, how to get paid in 90 days, how to file a claim for the asbestos trust funds, and more.
We are happy to offer assistance to all cities and towns in Delaware, such
Wilmington, Dover, Newark, Bear, Middletown, Glasgow, Brookside, Hockessin, Pike Creek Valley, Smyrna, Milford, Claymont, Wilmington, Manor, Pike Creek, North Star, Seaford, Georgetown, Elsmere, Edgemoor, New Castle, Millsboro, Laurel Highland Acres, Harrington, Camden, Dover Base Housing, Rising Sun-Lebanon, Clayton, Lewes, Milton, Riverview, Selbyville, Greenville, Woodside East, Bridgeville, Townsend, Ocean View, Kent Acres, Delaware City, Long Neck, Delmar, Cheswold, Wyoming, Rodney Village, Rehoboth Beach, Felton, Blades, St. Georges, Bellefonte, Bethany Beach, Newport, Greenwood, Frankford, Dagsboro, Frederica, Millville, South Bethany, Arden, Fenwick Island, Ellendale, Houston, Odessa, Dewey Beach, Bowers, Kenton, Ardentown, Magnolia, Little Creek, Ardencroft, Slaughter Beach, Leipsic, Woodsid,e Bethel, Viola, Henlopen Acres, Farmington, Hartly, and more.
Job Sites Associated with Asbestos Use in Delaware
As previously mentioned, chemical companies played a major part in asbestos use in Delaware. Although they provided many Delaware residents a means of employment, these companies also placed them in direct risk of harm. DuPont Chemical, one of the nation’s largest chemical and paint companies, has exposed arrays of people to asbestos in several states, including its Seaford and Wilmington locations in Delaware. Although the company was warned of the hazards of using asbestos back in the 1930s, they continued to use it in pipes, boilers, machinery, and equipment for several decades. DuPont has faced several lawsuits because of their negligence.
Unfortunately, several other chemical companies operated in the same manner, ignoring the warning signs of asbestos while placing workers at risk for extremely dangerous diseases such as mesothelioma cancer and asbestosis. Examples of additional chemical companies in Delaware include:
- General Chemical Corporation (also known as Delaware Valley Works: DVW), Claymont
- Atlas Chemical Industries, Wilmington
- Dow Chemical, Newark
- Helix Associates Inc., Newark
- Croda Inc. New Castle
W.R. Grace in Delaware
W.R. Grace, a chemicals and materials company, has faced a plethora of mesothelioma lawsuits across the nation for putting workers in harm’s way on a daily basis for several years. In fact, over 200,000 total lawsuits have been filed against W.R. Grace. In Delaware, a small vermiculite processing plant, located in Wilmington, received several hundred tons of asbestos to its plant from the 1940s until the early 1990s. The asbestos was processed and then shipped to W.R. Grace’s headquarters in Libby, Montana. Not only were the plant’s worker in danger, but residents in the surrounding also risked ingesting and inhaling airborne asbestos fibers.
Violations of Asbestos Rules at Delaware Schools
As aforementioned, several buildings that were built during a time in which asbestos-containing materials were heavily used are still standing and being used in Delaware today. As a result, the EPA requires that each building associated with asbestos use undergo strict regulations and requirements on a regular basis to ensure that the asbestos within the buildings aren’t disturbed. Known as the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA), the law mandates that all buildings are to be inspected and reported regularly. In 1999, the following schools were found to be in direct violation of AHERA when they failed to properly inspect and report each building:
- Albert Einstein Academy
- Hockessin Montessori School
- John Dickinson High School
- Tall Oaks Classical School
- William Penn High School
It’s important to note that the EPA did not state that the schools had any asbestos disruption during this time. However, because they failed to maintain the mandated maintenance plans, they ran the risk of potentially putting thousands of students and staff member in danger. Each school was fined anywhere from $3,000 to $5,500.
Additional Job Sites and Buildings Associated with Asbestos Use in Delaware
- Atlantic Oil
- Dover Air Force Base
- Chrysler Plant
- Getty Oil Company/Refinery
- Sun Oil Company
- Texaco Refinery
- Evraz Claymont Steel Holdings
- Standard Chlorine of Delaware
- Our Lady of Lourdes Church
- Tidewater Refinery
- Motiva Enterprises
Naturally-Occurring Asbestos in Delaware
There is only one area in Delaware that contains a natural asbestos source. Situated in New Castle County in the northern portion of the state, the Mount Serpentine body covers 1.5 miles, and is littered with arrays of natural asbestos. Fortunately, no asbestos has been recorded as ever being commercially mined.
Asbestos Death and Illness Statistics in Delaware
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), Delaware is ranked #44 out of the 51 states in the United States for asbestos-related deaths. From 1999 to 2008, there have been a total of 153 asbestos-related deaths in Delaware. The majority of these deaths are a result of mesothelioma cancer, which claimed the lives of 100 victims. The additional 53 victims died from asbestosis.
Delaware Asbestos Laws
Under Title 16, Chapter 78, of the Delaware General Assembly, there are several asbestos regulations that must be adhered at all times, including the following:
No one can carry about the duties of handling, working around, or removing asbestos without first being certified by the state, nor can anyone call themselves an “asbestos contractor” without possessing the proper licensing.
No one, by state law, may hire a worker for asbestos abatement unless the worker is certified by the state as an asbestos technician and/or professional.
Asbestos abatement in Delaware consists of the demolition, encapsulation, removal, and salvage of asbestos. In addition, asbestos abatement includes the transportation and disposal of asbestos into the proper landfill.
Before being certified, those who choose to work around asbestos must be in good health and free of any respiratory problems. They must also be physically fit and able to handle the working conditions without posing hazards on others.
Strict training, courses, and guidelines must be met for the state of Delaware will grant official licensing and credentials to work around asbestos.
Keep in mind that the aforementioned regulations only cover the basic details of asbestos laws in Delaware. For more detailed information on asbestos laws and regulations, contact the Delaware General Assembly or the Delaware Solid Waste Authority.
Getting Medical Help for Asbestos-Related Diseases in Delaware
- St. Francis Hospital: 701 North Clayton Street, Wilmington, DE, 19805 (302-421-4100)
- Helen F. Graham Cancer Center: 4701 Ogletown-Stanton Road, Newark, DE, 19713 (302-623-4500)
Keep in mind that if you need mesothelioma treatment or help with any other type of asbestos-related illnesses, it’s important to look for physicians and centers that specifically specialize in asbestos diseases. Since these types of cancers are still considered relatively new in the medical world, many physicians and clinics may not be able to diagnose and treat you as well as those who are trained to deal with these illnesses. In other words, a clinic backed by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is always recommended over a general practice office that doesn’t specialize in asbestos-related diseases.
Statute of Limitations for Asbestos Lawsuits in Delaware
Delaware follows a strict statute of limitations that must be adhered to when filing an asbestos-related lawsuit. Lawsuits must be filed within two years from the time that the victim was diagnosed or should have been reasonably diagnosed with the asbestos-related disease. For wrongful death cases, the plaintiff must file within two years of the victim’s date of death.
Delaware Legal Help
If you or a family member was diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, keep in mind that as mentioned earlier, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation. Get our free Financial Compensation Packet for info on the top mesothelioma and asbestos lawyers in your area. For questions and assistance, feel free to contact us at 800-793-4540.