USS Butternut (YAG-60) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

USS Butternut (YAG-60)

The USS Butternut (AN-9/YN-4/ANL-9/YAG-60) was laid down as a yard net tender on 11 March 1941 at Houghton, Washington, by the Lake Washington Shipyard; launched on 10 May 1941; and placed in service at the Puget Sound Navy Yard on 3 September 1941, with Lieutenant Andreas S. Einmo, USNR, in charge. Early in October, the ship began duty with the Inshore Patrol, 13th Naval District, after being fitted up at Puget Sound. The USS Butternut was decommissioned at San Diego, California, on 18 July 1969, and its name was struck from the Navy list that same day. For World War II service, the USS Butternut received one battle star. Asbestos was highly prized by the US Navy, as it was by other branches of the US military, for its capacity to withstand heat and protect personnel from fire. Pipes were located throughout Navy warships. The majority of these pipes were insulated with asbestos covers, which prevented heat or cold from escaping. Personnel responsible for repairing damaged pipes were at the highest risk of inhaling asbestos particles. Workers were required to repair damaged pipe coatings whenever they were damaged. This included removing the old insulation and installing new insulation, both of which contained asbestos. Many of these sailors eventually developed asbestos-related illnesses.

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