Stuff You Should Know
Built in Newport News, Virginia, this Essex-class aircraft carrier laid the groundwork for the next 23 Essex-class ships that followed. It started its service in 1942 and immediately began its missions in the Pacific where it earned 13 battle stars. During its service, the aircraft carrier was reclassified and became an antisubmarine carrier before being decommissioned in 1969. As previously mentioned, the ships that were built between 1930 and 1970 contained asbestos in their equipment on board. Practically, the companies which provided the ship manufacturers with pumps, boilers, valves and the electrical components knew that those are contaminated and present a high risk but never mentioned a word. The crew inhaled the asbestos dust whenever they got into the boiler and engine rooms and, due to the poor ventilation, they got sick in a short period of time. Because the sick veterans did not know about the danger, they can and have the right to sue those companies now in order to receive some compensation.