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The Flintkote Company was founded in 1901 and started producing asphalt shingles with immediate success. As a result of its early achievements, Flintkote expanded sales to Europe in the 1920s. As they continued expanding, they added asbestos into the production process.

In the 1930s, the Flintkote Company added asbestos shingles, siding and cement to its product offerings. The company continued to produce the asbestos-containing products until the early 1980s. Their longtime use of the mineral resulted in the Flintkote Company being named a defendant in thousands of asbestos-related lawsuits. The high cost associated with litigation led the company to file for bankruptcy in 2004. Since entering bankruptcy, the Flintkote Company set up a trust fund that continues to accept claims and compensate victims.


The Flintkote Company History of Asbestos Use

Quick Facts
  • Years in Operation: 1917 – 1987
  • Location: San Francisco, California
  • Production: Roofing materials
  • Asbestos Trust: Yes

Founded in 1901, the Flintkote Company incorporated in Massachusetts in 1917. The New England-based company began producing roofing materials, most notably asphalt shingles. The products were quickly successful, allowing Flintkote to begin selling their roofing materials overseas in 1920.

In the 1930s, the company began adding asbestos to its products. At the time, the cheap additive was used by many manufacturers to increase product durability, strength and resistance to fire. Flintkote added asbestos to many of its products, including their shingles, siding and cement.

Flintkote Plant Locations During The Company’s Asbestos Use

The company experienced booming business through the 1930s while producing asbestos-containing products. In 1936, the Flintkote Company began offering public stock options and diversified its products to include boxes for other consumer goods.

Beginning in 1956, Flintkote acquired businesses that enabled them to branch out into new industries including gypsum, piping, paper products and additional cement goods. Within seven years, the company operated almost 150 plants, 21 of which were international. The company’s highest-grossing products, however, continued to be its construction and building materials, most of which contained asbestos.

Throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s, the Flintkote Company experienced a financial downturn, with declining sales year after year. The hardships were due to a combination of increased labor costs and strikes causing delays in production at the Flintkote plants. By this time, the dangers of asbestos and its link to health risks like mesothelioma were also well known. As more and more people were diagnosed with asbestos diseases, victims and their families began filing lawsuits against Flintkote and other asbestos companies.

By 1987, the mounting asbestos litigation costs led the Flintkote Company to sell its construction, stone and cement product units. The funds from the sale were used to address their legal woes and the company ceased all operations in 1987.

The Flintkote Company Asbestos Products

The Flintkote Company’s initial products were asbestos-free. However, beginning in the 1930s, the company started using asbestos fibers in some of its offerings. Flintkote’s asbestos-containing products included asbestos shingles, cement and siding.

The Flintkote Company included asbestos in its products until the early 1980s.

The Flintkote Company Products Containing Asbestos
Expand List of Products Containing Asbestos
Product Name Start Year End Year
Flintkote #229 Antisweat Compound
Flintkote #60-w Waveline Siding
Flintkote #70-T Tapertax Siding
Flintkote #70-W Straight Edge Siding
Flintkote #70-X Stri-Color Siding
Flintkote Asbestos Cement Board
Flintkote Asbestos Cement Pipe
Flintkote Asbestos Cement Sheets
Flintkote Asbestos Cement Shingles
Flintkote Asbestos Cement Siding & Roofing
Flintkote Asbestos Felt
Flintkote BFC Cork-Filled Mastic 60-24 1959
Flintkote Black Joint Cement 1946 1960
Flintkote C-19 Coating 1954 1981
Flintkote C-20 Coating 1965 1967
Flintkote Ceiling Tiles
Flintkote Cement
Flintkote Cement Board
Flintkote Cement Pipe
Flintkote Colorcoat 1960 1975
Flintkote Decobase 1950 1978
Flintkote Decoralt Coating 1950 1978
Flintkote Felt
Flintkote Fibrex Asbestos Cement
Flintkote Filler Coat (900-20) 1964 1982
Flintkote Flexachrome Flooring
Flintkote Flexachrome Tile
Flintkote Flintkote #19 Asphalt
Flintkote Flintrock Joint Compound
Flintkote Floor Tiles
Flintkote GF-8 Floor Tile Cement 1940 1982
Flintkote Hydralt Protective Coating
Flintkote Hydrostatic Mastic 1973 1982
Flintkote Joint Treatment Compound
Flintkote Monticello Cement Shingles
Flintkote Mura-Tex Plastic Wall Tile
Flintkote No. 260 Export Box Sealer 1951 1960
Flintkote No. 338 Windshield Sealer 1950 1960
Flintkote Orangeburg Cement Pipe
Flintkote Plastic Cement 1940 1982
Flintkote Plastic Foundation Coating 1950 1960
Flintkote Rexalt Asbestos Roof Coating Fibrated
Flintkote Rexalt Roof Coating
Flintkote Roofing Shingles
Flintkote Semi-Mastic #214
Flintkote Siding
Flintkote Static Asphalt Fibrated Roofing
Flintkote Thermalkote
Flintkote Thermalkote Insulation Coating
Flintkote Tile-Tex Wall Tile
Flintkote Tiles
Flintkote Trowell Mastic 1961 1981
Flintkote Unimastic 150
Flintkote Unimastic 152
Flintkote Vincor Floor Tile
Flintkote Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile
Flintkote Weld-On Cement

The Flintkote Company and Occupational Exposure

All those employed by the Flintkote Company between the 1930s and the early 1980s may have experienced occupational asbestos exposure. The company employed thousands of workers. In June 1971, when the company was already experiencing a decline, they employed more than 11,000 people worldwide.

Employees with repeated exposure to the company’s asbestos-containing products are most at risk of developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.

In addition to those who worked for Flintkote, any workers who used their products or worked at jobsites with those products may also have been exposed. Industries most at risk include construction, masonry and architecture.

Occupations Impacted by The Flintkote Company’s Asbestos Use

Asbestos Litigation Against The Flintkote Company

According to reports, the Flintkote Company began to be named in asbestos-related lawsuits as early as the 1970s. However, they continued to use the dangerous mineral in production until 1982. Products containing asbestos were sold by the company until 1984.

By 2004, Flintkote had settled more than 350,000 asbestos claims, which cost them more than $630 million. The mounting costs of the asbestos litigation led the company to file for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in 2004. At the time of filing, the Flintkote Company had an additional 155,000 pending asbestos claims.

The Flintkote Company Asbestos Trust Fund

In 2015, the Flintkote Company formed an asbestos trust fund to handle all asbestos-related claims filed against the company. The Flintkote Company and Flintkote Mines Limited Asbestos Personal Injury Trust was initially funded with $214 million.

The current payment percentage for successful claims is 8%.

All asbestos trust funds operate in a similar way, using a payment percentage to compensate successful claims in order to maintain adequate funding for future claimants. The Flintkote Company trust has had an 8% payment percentage since its founding in 2015. However, some claimants may be awarded larger amounts based on a number of factors including age, exposure type and the firm’s settlement history.

Today, the trust continues to accept claims and compensate victims.

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