Storekeepers and Asbestos Exposure


Effective building materials are sometimes dangerous for the human body. This is the case of asbestos, a mineral with fire-retardant properties. Asbestos is composed of fibers that are invisible to the naked eye and can easily get into the lungs. Once inhaled, they have a latency period of 20-50 years until developing diseases like mesothelioma, fibrosis, asbestosis, or lung cancer.

The US Navy needed products like engines, turbines, pumps, valves, gaskets, pipes, or brake linings for the shipbuilding process. These products were coated with asbestos to prevent them from catching fire when used at high temperatures. Many companies manufactured and provided these asbestos-containing elements for the US Navy, especially during the two World Wars when the number of ships increased dramatically. Nowadays, the consequences are devastating: many veterans are dead, and several thousands of them are suffering from the diseases mentioned above.

Being a storekeeper in the US Navy was only risky when it came to asbestos exposure. A storekeeper is in charge of the military supply stores, purchasing, shipping, and receiving the equipment, tools, food, or everything that is needed on a US Navy ship. Not only does the storekeeper receive the items, but he also preserves them and keeps inventories. The work is mainly performed in front of a computer but sometimes involves cleaning out damaged insulation from the storerooms. During wartime, a storekeeper performs his job mostly in the powder and shot magazines.

Other positions at risk include stock control clerk, responsible for maintaining inventory and document accuracy, and ship's serviceman or administrationman, in charge of administrative stock control functions and tracking products entering or leaving the storage room.

Asbestos exposure occurred while moving around in every section of a ship, where the worker was likely to inhale asbestos dust during his everyday duties. Donald C., a storekeeper on the USS Washburn AKA-108, said: "After years of serving in the US Navy, we found out that we were exposed to asbestos. We didn't know how much damage asbestos can do to the human body." He died of mesothelioma in 2014.

Navy veterans diagnosed with cancer stemming from asbestos exposure are immediately eligible for compensations that could relieve their financial burdens. We offer assistance by connecting you with attorneys specializing in asbestos cases, ready to support your case with their expertise.

If you have a cancer diagnosis please contact us

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