Maine has a long history in the shipbuilding and paper industries, both of which used asbestos and put workers at risk of exposure and illness. A dedicated Maine mesothelioma lawyer can assist families in getting the help they need and compensation they deserve.
If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, it’s important to note that you may qualify for substantial compensation. Fill out our form to get a free Financial Compensation Packet. You’ll learn about the top mesothelioma lawyers in your Maine, how to get paid in 90 days, how to file a claim for the asbestos trust funds, and more.
Keep in mind that we are happy to offer assistance to residents of all Maine cities and towns, including:
Portland, Lewiston, Bangor, South Portland, Auburn, Biddeford, Sanford, Brunswick, Scarborough, Saco, Augusta, Westbrook, Windham, Gorham, Waterville, York, Falmouth, Kennebunk, Orono, Standish, Wells, Kittery, Presque Isle, Brewer, Cape Elizabeth, Lisbon, Topsham, Old Orchard Beach, Skowhegan, Yarmouth, Bath, Buxton, Freeport, Caribou, Ellsworth, Gray, Winslow, Old Town, Waterboro and Farmington, Berwick, Cumberland, Hampden, South Berwick, Rockland, Fairfield, Belfast, Eliot and Oakland, Houlton, Winthrop, Lebanon, Rumford, Turner, Gardiner, New Gloucester, Hermon, Poland, Bar Harbo,r Bridgton, Paris, Lincoln Town, Waldoboro, Norway, Bucksport, Sabattus, Camden, Jay, Madison, Harpswell, Warren, North Berwick, Glenburn, Millinocket, Raymond, Lyman, Greene, Vassalboro, Hollis, China, Sidney, Pittsfield, Dover-Foxcroft, Wilton, Oxford, Monmouth, Fort Kent, Arundel, Madawaska, Naples, Dexter, Durham, Winterport, Casco, Orrington, Limington, Wiscasset, Litchfield, North Yarmouth, Kennebunkport, Fort Fairfield, Clinton, and more.
Maine Asbestos Facts
- Between 1999 and 2013, Maine had 2,003 deaths related to asbestos exposure.
- Of those deaths, 1,440 were from lung cancer, 360 from mesothelioma, and 225 from asbestosis.
- Maine ranks the 27th in the nation for asbestos-related deaths.
- York County has had the highest number of asbestos-related deaths.
- A study from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health determined that the ranks number one for the most asbestos deaths per capita.
- The study also stated that asbestos exposure primarily came from working in businesses such as paper mills, chemical factories, and shipyards.
Which Industries in Maine Exposed Workers to Asbestos?
Some of Maine’s important early industries, like lumber and shipbuilding, started using asbestos in the 1800s in machinery to prevent corrosion and resist high temperatures.
As a result, many individuals who worked in Maine shipyards, paper mills, and lumber yards have suffered from various asbestos-related diseases, ranging from asbestosis to malignant mesothelioma, a rare but deadly cancer.
The peak period of asbestos use in the U.S. started in the 1930s and continued up to the early 1970s. By 1973, however, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its first findings that asbestos was a toxic carcinogen which caused lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Before that time, any industrial workplace in the state likely put workers at risk for exposure to asbestos. The mineral was used in all kinds of equipment, in fireproofing and insulating materials, and in machinery to reduce friction.
Asbestos Exposure in Shipbuilding
In Maine, the largest impact of asbestos was felt by the shipbuilding industry. By 1941, it was standard procedure to insulate almost every part of a ship with asbestos-containing materials (ACMs). Thus, every ship made for the civilian economy or the U.S. military contained many tons of asbestos.
Some specific examples of shipping companies and locations that exposed workers to asbestos include:
- Bath Iron Works Shipyard
- Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
- Boothbay Harbor Shipyard
- Sample’s Shipyard
Asbestos in the Paper Industry
With the abundance of forests in the state, lumber and paper making have been big industries in Maine. Some of the companies that used asbestos are:
- Eastern Paper
- Hearst Paper Division
- Pejepscot Paper Company
- Champion Paper
- Maine Seaboard Paper Company
- St. Regis Paper Company
- Great Northern Paper Mill
- International Paper Company
- Jay Paper Mill
- Eastern Fine Paper and Pulp
- Katahdin Pulp and Paper Company
- Lincoln Pulp & Paper
- International Paper Company
- Great Northern Paper Company
- Kennebec River Pulp & Paper Company
- Madison Paper Corporation
- Northern Paper Company
- Great Northern Paper Company
- Oxford Paper Company
- Boise Cascade Paper Mill
- Mead Paper Group
- Northern Paper
- Sappi Fine Paper
- Scott Paper Company
- Georgia Pacific Paper Mill
- St. Croix Paper Company
- Androscoggin Mill
Other Locations with Asbestos
Maine’s power companies, many public buildings, and military installations have also contributed to asbestos exposure:
- Brunswick Electric Light and Power Company
- Central Maine Power Company
- Maine Yankee Nuclear Power Plant
- W.F Wyman Power Station
- FPL Energy
- Boardman Hall (University of Maine)
- Bowdoin College
- Mount Blue High School
- Pownal State School
- Colby College
- Mt. Mercy Academy
- Dow Air Force Base
- Brunswick Naval Air Station
- Loring Air Force Base
What About Naturally-Occurring Asbestos in Maine?
Although asbestos was never mined in Maine, many people were exposed to asbestos from natural deposits, particularly in the Western portion of the states. This is likely because of mines in the nearby areas of Canada. Asbestos fibers released from those mines probably contaminated areas of Maine.
Maine also has a few locations with naturally-occurring asbestos. Most locations are along the coastlines. One area containing asbestos is on the shores of Chain Lakes, which is situated close to Highway SR 27. Another area lies within the coastline close to Blue Bay.
What Are Maine’s Asbestos Laws?
Under Title 38, Chapter 12-A of the Maine Revised Statutes, are several asbestos laws and regulations:
- Mandatory licensing and certifications for all individuals who are renovating, repairing, and/or demolitioning a building that contains asbestos.
- Specific landfills in which asbestos can be disposed at
- Stringent rules regarding the regular maintenance, recording, and upkeep of schools that were built with asbestos-containing materials
- Acceptable forms of work practice while working around asbestos, such as the proper protective clothing and gear.
- Mandated ways of disposing of asbestos in the proper way, handled by the state’s Waste Management Department
- Specific asbestos management regulations as defined in Chapter 425 of the Maine Waste Management Rules.
- Off-Site OSHA asbestos rules and regulations that must be followed at all times.
For more information and any questions or concerns regarding asbestos in Maine, contact the Maine Department of Environmental Protection’s Waste Management Department, or that Asbestos Hazards Prevention Program’s staff members at 207-287-2651.
How Do I Get Mesothelioma Treatment in Main?
It’s imperative to find a physician that specializes in asbestos-related diseases. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) makes this process easier by appointing the best hospitals as NCI-designated facilities. An NCI-designation means that the care center has been recognized for specialists with in-depth knowledge and experience dealing with cancer.
The Maine Medical Care Institute (MMCI) is an NCI-designated care center with some of the most comprehensive technology and resources for mesothelioma patients. MMCI also received a $3.5 million grant from NCI in order to help physicians and healthcare professionals research, develop new programs, and provide treatment to cancer patients who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford it.
Statute of Limitations for Asbestos Lawsuits in Maine
Although Maine follows a strict guideline when it comes to filing asbestos-related lawsuits, the time span allotted is more generous when compared to other states:
- A plaintiff must file the lawsuit within six years of diagnosis.
- For wrongful death lawsuits, the plaintiff must file within two years of the victim’s death.
Legal Help in Maine
Remember, if you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may qualify for significant compensation. 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 Mesothelioma Attorney Paul Danziger
Paul Danziger grew up in Houston, Texas and earned a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago. For over 25 years years he has focused on representing mesothelioma cancer victims and others hurt by asbestos exposure. Paul and his law firm have represented thousands of people diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestosis, and lung cancer, recovering hundreds of millions of dollars for injured clients. Every client is extremely important to Paul and he will take every call from clients who want to speak with him. Paul and his law firm handle mesothelioma cases throughout the United States.