USS S-3 (S-107) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

Laid down by Portsmouth Navy Yard in 1917, the USS S-3 was a submarine belonging to the U.S. Navy. It was sponsored by Mrs. William L. Hill and had Commander John W. Lewis in command for the first years it operated. After outfitting and trials, the USS S-3 began training operations along the New England coast. In 1920, it visited Havana, Cuba twice. One year later, the submarine was attached to Submarine Division 12, whose purpose was to rendezvous off Portsmouth for the longest voyage on record at that time. Asbestos, a highly carcinogenic mineral, was present aboard the USS S-3 since it had excellent resistance to fire and electricity and was also very cheap at the beginning of the last century. However, exposure to asbestos is correlated with the occurrence of serious diseases such as lung cancer, which is why people who served aboard this submarine need to keep a close eye on their health. Following inhalation or ingestion, asbestos fibers, which are microscopic, will attach themselves to various organs and tissues in the body, gradually causing severe inflammation and scarring that may eventually lead to the development of a disease. In 1937, the USS S-3 was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register and subsequently scrapped.

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