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U.S. Navy battleships have historically played a strategic role during wartime and were used in both offensive and defensive roles. Unfortunately, many U.S. Navy veterans who served on these heavily armed warships were unknowingly exposed to asbestos throughout their tour of duty. Tens of thousands of people may have been exposed to these harmful materials during their time aboard one of the dozens of battleships. For example, the USS Alabama alone held as many as 2,300 passengers at a time during war.

Several areas of these battleships, such as the engine and boiler rooms, were constructed with asbestos to make them fireproof. Repair or maintenance work in these areas often resulted in the creation of airborne asbestos dust. Anyone breathing in concentrated amounts of asbestos over a prolonged period of time, like Navy veterans who served on U.S. battleships, is at risk of developing mesothelioma or other asbestos-related diseases even decades after exposure.


NameHullClassCommissionedFate
USS AlabamaBB-60South Dakota8/16/1942Museum Ship
USS ArizonaBB-39Pennsylvania10/17/1916Sunk, 1941
USS ArkansasBB-33Wyoming9/17/1912Sunk, 1946
USS CaliforniaBB-44Tennessee8/10/1921Sold for Scrap, 1959
USS ColoradoBB-45Colorado8/30/1923Sold for Scrap, 1959
USS DelawareBB-284/4/1910Sold for Scrap, 1924
USS FloridaBB-309/15/1911Sold for Scrap
USS IdahoBB-244/1/1908Sunk, 1941
USS IdahoBB-42New Mexico3/24/1919Sold for Scrap
USS IndianaBB-58South Dakota4/30/1942Sold for Scrap
USS IowaBB-61Iowa2/22/1943
USS KansasBB-214/18/1907Sold for Scrap
USS MarylandBB-46Colorado7/21/1921Sold for Scrap
USS MassachusettsBB-59South Dakota5/12/1942Museum Ship
USS MichiganBB-271/4/1910Sold for Scrap
USS MinnesotaBB-223/9/1907Sold for Scrap
USS MississippiBB-232/1/1908Sold to Greece
USS MississippiBB-41New Mexico12/18/1917Sold for Scrap
USS MissouriBB-63Iowa6/11/1944Museum Ship
USS NevadaBB-36Nevada3/11/1916Sunk, 1948
USS New HampshireBB-253/19/1908Sold for Scrap
USS New JerseyBB-62Iowa5/23/1943
USS New MexicoBB-40New Mexico5/20/1918Sold for Scrap, 1947
USS New YorkBB-34New York4/15/1914Sunk, 1948
USS North CarolinaBB-55North Carolina4/9/1941Museum Ship
USS North DakotaBB-29Delaware4/11/1910Sold for Scrap, 1931
USS OklahomaBB-37Nevada5/2/1916Sunk, 1941
USS PennsylvaniaBB-38Pennsylvania6/12/1916Sunk, 1948
USS South CarolinaBB-263/1/1910Sold for Scrap
USS South DakotaBB-57South Dakota3/20/1942Sold for Scrap
USS TennesseeBB-43Tennessee6/3/1920Sold for Scrap, 1959
USS TexasBB-35New York3/12/1914Museum Ship
USS UtahBB-318/31/1911Sunk, 1941
USS VermontBB-203/4/1907Sold for Scrap
USS WashingtonBB-56North Carolina5/15/1941Sold for Scrap, 1961
USS West VirginiaBB-48Colorado12/1/1923Sold for Scrap
USS WisconsinBB-64Iowa4/16/1944Museum Ship
USS WyomingBB-32Wyoming9/25/1912Sold for Scrap
Written By

Tara Strand Senior Content Writer

Tara Strand specializes in researching and writing about asbestos, raising awareness and advocating for a ban.


Full Bio Editorial Guidelines
Reviewed By

Jennifer Lucarelli Legal Advisor and Contributor

Jennifer Lucarelli is a partner at the law firm of Early, Lucarelli, Sweeney & Meisenkothen, specializing in asbestos litigation.


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