AUGUSTA  — Maine lobsters need to arrive alive at their destinations, and a proposal before the Maine Legislature is aimed at making it more certain that happens.

Democratic Sen. Eloise Vitelli of Arrowsic has introduced a bill that would exempt truck drivers transporting live lobsters from some hours-of-service restrictions. Vitelli said the proposal would extend an exemption already granted to transporters of potatoes, broccoli and livestock.

“Getting lobsters quickly to market in Boston is essential for Maine lobster dealers to maintain and grow this iconic industry,” Vitelli said.

Vitelli introduced the bill on Tuesday and it will face votes in committee before moving on to the full state Senate and House of Representatives.

Virginia Olsen, a lobster fisherman from Stonington and board member of the Maine Lobstering Union, said members of the industry are at “an economic disadvantage when trying to bring our live product to market under the current time restraints.”


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