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Maine Bill Would Ban Flame Retardants in New Furniture

AUGUSTA, Maine -  Maine firefighters and their families turned out in force Monday to support legislation banning the use of flame retardants in new furniture. 

Former state Sen. Linda Baker, of Topsham, believes her husband, a firefighter, died from cancer caused by flame retardants.  Baker urged passage of the bill.

“This bill will help ensure that the remaining manufacturers remove these toxic chemicals from their products being sold in Maine,” Baker said.

Maine already prohibits the use of several specific chemicals as flame retardants in furniture and the proposed legislation would extend a ban to all of them.

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection opposed the measure, saying it would be very difficult to implement and would not meet its goal of protecting firefighters who are exposed to other toxic substances created by fires.