Located near downtown Baltimore, the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard covers about 113 acres. Commissioned by the US Government this yard handles a wide range of ship maintenance and repair as well as complete overhauls. The purpose of this yard is to provide repairs, shipbuilding and support for the Coast Guard. Originally developed in 1899, the yard (located at Hawkins Point) was designed as a training facility with vessel repair operations.
As with most shipyards, the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard reached its highest level of performance and demand during World War II. It kept nearly 3,000 civilians in a job, helping to stimulate the local economy. With two floating dry docks and three piers, this yard was prepared to handle massive operations. After World War II, as with most shipyards, need for the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard's services were needed less and less. They continued to produce and repair sea vessels through the '60s and 70s. Activity declined in the 1980s and '90s. The largest project of the 1990s was the manufacture of a 3,500 ton shiplift.
In October of 1998, huge overhauls and renovations were finished in the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard. Begun in 1984, in eighteen months and twenty-one million dollars, the yard became the only site for complicated naval weapons repair. They had contracts to repair such machines as the MK 75 76mm guns and the Saudi Arabian MK75 weapon systems. In the '90s, they began to increase their capabilities to include maintenance on the Paxman engine. When the massive shiplift was completed in 1997, the yard was newly able to handle overhauls on most Coast Guard ships.
Those who worked in shipyards have been among those exposed to asbestos among other hazards during their tenure with the company. Asbestos was used in many products for vessel construction and some of those who worked with these products have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare cancer caused only by asbestos exposure. Those who believe they may have been exposed should consult with their doctors immediately concerning their asbestos history. By filling out the form on this page, you can receive a free information packet about mesothelioma cancer and asbestos exposure.