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USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76)

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76)

The USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier serving the United States Navy. The first naval vessel to be named after a living former president, Reagan was commissioned in July 2003 under the command of Captain J.W. Goodwin.


The Nimitz-class carriers are the largest combat vessels afloat, with a length of 1092 feet and a beam of 252 feet at the flight deck. Propulsion is provided by two A4W nuclear reactors. These were specifically designed for use aboard the Nimitz-class by the Bettis and Knolls laboratories and built by Westinghouse.

All ten Nimitz-class carriers have been products of the Newport News Shipbuilding Company (now owned and operated by defense contractor Grumman-Northrop) near Norfolk, Virginia. Reagan's keel was laid in February 1998. During its construction, the project went over budget numerous times, but increases were always approved by Congress; eventually, the carrier cost US taxpayers in excess of $4.5 billion by the time it was launched in March 2001.

Repairs and Upgrades

After her shakedown trials, Reagan underwent five months of repairs and adjustments at the Grumman-Northrop facility before getting underway for her new home port of San Diego.

Wartime Service

During her maiden voyage between May and July 2004, Reagan visited several South American ports as she sailed around Cape Horn (being too large to pass through the Panama Canal).

Her first deployment was to the Persian Gulf between February and July of 2006. From January until April 2007, Reagan operated in the Far East while the USS Kitty Hawk underwent extended maintenance and repairs.

During her third deployment between May and August of 2008, Reagan was sent to the South Pacific, primarily providing humanitarian assistance to victims of Typhoon Feng-Shen in the Philippines. Following this, she proceeded to the Indian Ocean with the 5th Fleet for combat operations over Afghanistan. She returned to port in November of that year.

Reagan's next deployment between May and October 2009 took her back to the South Pacific and Indian Ocean. Her most recent mission as of this writing was the delivery of relief and emergency supplies to passengers aboard the MV Carnival Splendor when that vessel was stranded off the coast of Mexico after an engine room fire.

Asbestos Risk on the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76)

As one of the newest vessels in the fleet, Reagan has never represented a significant asbestos danger to crewmen, as use of this material was phased out during 1980s. There was a minor mishap aboard Reagan in January 2006 when a pilot attempted a landing and struck the flight deck at a low angle. The collision caused a fire on the flight deck, resulting in minor damage. Although there were no casualties (the pilot was able to eject), the $50-million fighter jet was lost over the side.

Although all the military services utilized asbestos in all sorts of bases and environments, exposure to asbestos was much more frequent on ships and in drydock, and so doctors find far more navy mesothelioma cases than in other branches. By the time of Ronald Reagan's service, asbestos was no longer being used in ship construction so crewmen sailing and doing dock work on board most likely were not inhaling unusual levels of asbestos while on board.

A mesothelioma prognosis is almost never optimistic; most mesothelioma patients survive for a few months to a few years once they receive a diagnosis. If you or a family member has developed pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma, you may have legal options available to you and a qualified mesothelioma attorney can help determine a course of action.

Trustworthy information concerning mesothelioma isn't always easy to obtain. As a result we've published a mesothelioma information package with information on legal options and choices for medical treatment, along with a list of clinical trials all over the U.S. All you have to do is complete the form on this page and we will get you a packet to you at no cost.



N/A. "CVN-76 Ronald Reagan." Retrieved 22 December 2010.

Polmar, Norman. The Naval Institute Guide to the Ships and Aircraft of the U.S. Fleet. (Annapolis: Naval Institute Press, 2004).

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