The SS Robert J. Banks was a Liberty ship built at J.A. Jones Construction, Brunswick, Georgia, during World War II. The ship sponsored by Mrs. George Buchanan was laid down on 21 November 1944, under a Maritime Commission contract, and launched on 20 December 1944. The highest risk of asbestos exposure in the Navy was aboard ships and in shipyards.
Navy jobs like boiler tenders, engine mechanics, shipfitters, pipefitters, steel workers and repairmen required close interaction with asbestos. All types of asbestos fibers are dangerous when breathed in. Inhaled asbestos fibers cause scarring of the lungs increasing the risk for diseases like lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis. On 9 October 1946, the SS Robert J. Banks was sold to the Netherlands. She was renamed Libreville after the city of Libreville, French Equatorial Africa, now Gabon. She was scrapped in 1967.