Florida has long history of asbestos use. From schools and residences to commercial buildings and industrial work sites, asbestos was used extensively and has made it one of the top states for mesothelioma and asbestos-related deaths. If you have been harmed by asbestos in the state, it’s important to contact an a lawyer for expert legal representation.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. Fill out our form to get a free Financial Compensation Packet. You’ll learn about the top mesothelioma lawyers in Florida, how to get paid in 90 days, how to file a claim for the asbestos trust funds, and more.
We can help any family in Florida, including those in the following cities:
Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Hialeah, Tallahassee, Fort Lauderdale, Port St. Lucie, Cape Coral, Pembroke Pines, Hollywood, Miramar, Gainesville, Coral Springs, Lehigh Acres, Brandon, Miami Gardens, Clearwater, Palm Bay, Pompano Beach, Lake City, West Palm Beach, Spring Hill, Lakeland, Davie, Miami Beach, Plantation City, Sunrise, Boca Raton, Deltona, Palm Coast, Largo, Deerfield Beach, Town ‘n’ Country, Melbourne, Alafaya, Riverview, Kendall, Boynton Beach, Lauderhill, Weston, Fort Myers, Pine Hills, Kissimmee, Homestead, Delray Beach, Tamarac, Daytona Beach, North Miami, Wellington, Kendale Lakes, Palm Harbor, North Port Jupiter, The Villages, Ocala, Port Orange, Coconut Creek, Sanford, Margate, Poinciana, The Hammocks, Tamiami, Port Charlotte, Fountainebleau, Sarasota, Pensacola, Bradenton, Palm Beach Gardens, Doral, Pinellas Park, Coral Gables, Country Club, Bonita Springs, Wesley Chapel, Apopka, Titusville, Cutler Bay, Oakland Park, North Miami Beach, Fort Pierce, North Lauderdale, Altamonte Springs, Egypt Lake-Leto, University Cdp, St. Cloud, North Fort Myers, Ocoee, Greenacres, Ormond Beach, Hallandale Beach, The Acreage, Kendall West, Winter Garden, Aventura, Richmond West, South Miami Heights, Panama City, Oviedo, Valrico, and more.
Facts about Asbestos Use in Florida
- The population of Florida has grown rapidly since the 1940s, which has fueled a boom in construction and the use of asbestos-containing materials.
- Both construction and shipping are important industries in Florida and used asbestos heavily in the years before 1980.
- The Florida Department of Environmental Protection created an Asbestos Removal Program in 1982 to manage the risks of renovation and demolition of buildings with asbestos.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), these industries have some of the highest rates of asbestos exposure and numbers of workers that developed mesothelioma.
- Florida became one of the first states to create strict filing requirements for asbestos cases because of high exposure and illness rates that led to thousands of lawsuits.
Asbestos Use on Ships
Anyone who worked in shipping in Florida was at risk exposure because nearly all ship components from the early- to mid-1900s contained asbestos:
- Deck covering materials
- Tubes and packing material
- Hydraulic materials
- Bedding materials
- Engine and fire room equipment
- Fireproofing materials
- Fire-fighting materials
Asbestos in the Construction Industry
Like the shipping industry, the construction of buildings also relied on asbestos. Many workers in the industry were at risk of exposure:
- Demolition workers
Many of the buildings constructed with asbestos are still occupied today. Commercial buildings, public buildings, schools, hospitals, libraries, and others, as well as residential homes, often contain asbestos even now.
Florida Processing Plants Contaminated by Asbestos
Many industrial plants used asbestos in their Florida locations. Mineral processing is an important industry in the state, and has been responsible for many cases of asbestos exposure.
In 2005 the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Florida Department of Health (DOH) inspected the The Zonolite and W.R. Grace & Company Exfoliation Facility in Tampa.
The vermiculite processed here was heavily contaminated with asbestos. The original mine shut in the 1990s, but asbestos-contaminated vermiculite lingers in facilities around the country. This includes a few processing plants in Florida.
What Other Industries Used Asbestos in Florida?
Several companies and industries are known to have used asbestos in the past and to have potentially exposed workers.
- Avon Power Park Plant
- Big Bend Power Plant
- Armour Chemical Plant
- Florida Crushed Stone Cement Plant
- WR Grace Phosphate Plant
- U.S. Gypsum Plant
- Union Camp Chemical Plant
- Alton Box Plant
- American Cyanamid Chemical Plant
- Escambia Chemical Plant
- Newport Chemical Plant
- Hookers Point Power Plant
- Culbreath Power Plant
- Nitram Chemical Plant
- Peter O’Knight Power Plant
- U.S. Phosphoric Plant
- Georgia Pacific Plywood Plant
- Debary Power Plant
- Georgia E. Turner Power Plant
- Fort Myers Power Plant
- Gator Power Plant
- Anclote Power Plant
- Inglis Power Plant
- Arizona Chemical Plant
- Gulf Power Plant
- Calpine Auburn Power Plant
- Florida Crushed Stone Cement Plant
- Fort Lauderdale Power Plant (Florida Power and Light)
- Patrick Air Force Base
- Eglin Air Force Base
- Homestead Air Force Base
- Naval Air Station (NAS)
- Pensacola Naval Shipyard
- Tyndall Air Force Base
- American Container Paper Mill Rayonier Paper Mill
- St. Regis Paper Mill International Paper Mill
- Smurfit-Stone Container Pulp and Paper Mill
- Champion Paper Mill
- St. Regis Paper Company Mill
- Bollinger Shipyard
- Gibbs Shipyard
- Jacksonville Shipyard
- Tampa Bay Shipbuilding
- Wainwright Shipyard
- University of Florida
- Tampa Electric
- Cape Canaveral Kennedy Space Center
- CF Industries
- Anheuser-Busch Brewery
- Exxon Oil Refinery
- Hess Oil
- Reliant Energy
- Monsanto Textiles
- Duke Energy
- CPV Cana Ltd.
What Are Florida’s Asbestos Laws?
Florida laws related to asbestos exposure include Chapters 62-257 of the Florida Administrative Code:
- Plans to renovate or remove the asbestos materials in a building must be reported with a “Notice of Demolition or Asbestos Renovation Form.”
- Removal, demolition, or renovation of asbestos-containing materials must be performed by a worker who has completed all NESHAP or OSHA training and who is certified.
- Any employee working near or with asbestos has to be given appropriate protective clothing.
- Any residential homeowner removing or renovating asbestos-containing materials cannot be put up for rent or sale until the work is completed and approved.
- Schools containing asbestos must be inspected on a regular basis to ensure it is contained and safe.
Florida’s Asbestos Reform Law
In 1997, Florida legislators passed a law to help speed the legal process for sick victims of asbestos exposure. The Florida Asbestos Reform Law gives victims who have received a diagnosis priority over other exposure victims when filing a mesothelioma lawsuit.
Even if you don’t have symptoms or a diagnosis, you still have a right to file a lawsuit. Just know that cases involving people who are already sick will have priority.
What is the Statute of Limitations on Asbestos Cases in Florida?
Under Fla. Stat. Ann. § 95.011 et seq., plaintiffs must file an asbestos-related lawsuit according to the statute of limitations:
- Any lawsuit must be filed within four years of the diagnosis of an asbestos-related disease or four years from when the disease should have reasonably been discovered.
- Victims’ families have four years from the time of death to file an asbestos-related wrongful death lawsuit.
Getting Florida Legal Help
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, and more. Get our free Financial Compensation Packet for information on the top mesothelioma and asbestos lawyers in your area. If you have questions or need assistance, contact us toll-free at 800-793-4540.
Page Reviewed and Edited by Florida Mesothelioma Lawyer Rebecca S. Vinocur, P.A.
Rebecca S. Vinocur heads up her own mesothelioma law firm based in Coral Gables, Florida. A graduate of the University of Miami School of Law, Rebecca has over twenty years of mesothelioma law practice in the state of Florida. She uses her experience and knowledge of asbestos litigation to fight on behalf of asbestos victims who are battling mesothelioma and other related illnesses.