Late last year, in December, I talked to an aide to Sen. Susan Collins about a coming national and worldwide calamity. I worked in engineering and health care for 40 years, and over that time I witnessed (and listed for the aide) a number of frightening political and corporate engineering mistakes that were all adding up to a world catastrophe, worse than Chernobyl.

I personally had been exposed by my employer to volatile organic compounds listed as extremely hazardous and toxic. This happened as a result of corporate greed for the sake of profit. No safety training or personal protective equipment was provided. I was not even told of these compounds being in my work environment, even though my employer knew how dangerous they were and kept it secret.

I became extremely ill and was forced into retirement. For several years after that I tried to get our elected officials to stop their bickering and pay attention to what was happening. For the sake of political expediency and corporate greed, the world was being put at risk. They would not listen.

When, in late December, I saw what was happening in China, I tried again to get them to understand the ramifications of this if they did not act. Again they would not listen and were more involved in impeaching the president, political bickering being more important. Now here we are in a worldwide catastrophe.

Even after this subsides and some normalcy may return will we learn anything from it. I fear not.

Lawrence Everett

West Paris

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