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Wyandotte Chemical Plant, Wyandotte, Michigan

Wyandotte Chemical Plant in Wyandotte, Michigan, has a long history of chemical manufacturing. The site began operating in 1893, under the Michigan Alkali Company. Originally, the Wyandotte plant was responsible for producing baking soda, soda ash, and lye. Later, under the Wyandotte Chemical Co., this plant switched to the production of soaps and cleaners.

BASF Chemical Products

In 1969, the German chemical corporation BASF took over the Wyandotte Chemical Plant, adding it to the company’s global holdings. BASF produces many different chemicals around the world, including:

  • Biodegradable plastics
  • Foams
  • Plastics for engineering
  • Polyamides
  • Polyurethane
  • Styrenics

Wyandotte Chemical Plant Today

As a bastion of BASF’s holdings in America, the Wyandotte site has undergone several expansions in recent years. In 1987, BASF opened a polyurethane suspension plant at the site, and then an expandable polypropylene plant the following year. Next, in 1989, BASF expanded the Wyandotte Chemical Plant even further, adding a plastic materials compounding facility. It also announced several expansions in the 1990s, including:

  • TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) in 1990
  • Plastic compounding in 1992
  • Expanded polypropylene in 1993

Asbestos in Older Chemical Plants

Although many portions of the Wyandotte chemical plant site are newer expansions, any portions built before 1989 are at risk for containing asbestos fibers. Asbestos was once lauded for its ability to serve as an insulating agent for electricity, heat, flame, and chemicals. Thus, many chemical plants, which required this extreme insulation, used asbestos fibers in many different parts of the buildings in order to help prevent accidents.

For More Information

Unfortunately, as these chemical plants continue to age, they are at risk for releasing asbestos fibers into the environment. If inhaled, asbestos fibers can cause devastating diseases like mesothelioma. If you have lived or worked near a chemical plant, you should learn more about the risks of asbestos exposure. For more information, please fill out our contact form today and get in touch with an asbestos attorney of Williams Hart by calling 800-781-3955 today.

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