Asbestos Exposure in the Navy

by | Oct 7, 2013 | Veterans' News |

Are you or one of your loved ones a retired Navy veteran? United States military veterans are at a higher risk for being exposed to asbestos at some point in their lives than regular civilians, and are more likely to develop fatal diseases related to asbestos exposure. But why? Navy veterans should pay extra close attention to their health as they age, because the ships they worked on all of those decades ago were filled with asbestos “from bow to stern1.”

Ship Construction with cranes

Asbestos is a small, fibrous mineral that has been documented in the United States as a known carcinogen and hazard to human health, but it wasn’t always viewed that way. Different forms of asbestos have been used in thousands of U.S. consumer products for centuries. It was built into buildings including schools and homes, and was ultimately praised as a “miracle mineral” by many across the nation. It was not until the late 1970’s that the dangers of asbestos became documented and widely known — long after our vets had been exposed to asbestos by building and sailing within Navy vessels.

Mesothelioma is one of the diseases caused by asbestos exposure, and symptoms can have a latency period anywhere from ten to fifty years. It is no wonder why more than thirty percent of mesothelioma victims are veterans2, many of which worked on ships during World War II, the Vietnam War, and the Korean War.

With the Navy’s birthday approaching next weekend, now seems like the perfect time to spread awareness for all of those who served and defended our country at sea among asbestos. Our veterans have already fought in battles for the United States, but now they must fight for their lives and legal rights.

Were you exposed to asbestos during your time serving in the Navy? Brayton Purcell successfully represents U.S. Navy veterans suffering from asbestos-related diseases. A San Francisco jury awarded Brayton Purcell client, Andrew Cadlo, $8,673,704.00 in compensation3. Contact us today to find out what you are entitled to.

Sources: 1, 2, 3

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