Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma in Hawaii

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Prolonged exposure to asbestos can lead to serious health problems including pleural mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer. If you have lived and worked in Hawaii for a significant amount of time, there is a chance that you were exposed to asbestos at home or in the workplace. For your convenience, we have compiled information about asbestos and mesothelioma in the state of Hawaii.

01. Statistics

Hawaii Mesothelioma and Asbestos Statistics

  • From 1999-2015, 117 Hawaiian residents died from mesothelioma
  • There are no known asbestos deposits on the islands of Hawaii (Source: USGS)
  • Overall mesothelioma incidence in Hawaii is very low, with only a slightly higher incidence on the Big Island than the other islands (Source: Journal of the American Medical Association)
02. Asbestos in Workplaces

Asbestos Exposure in Hawaii Workplaces

With no naturally occurring deposits of asbestos on the Hawaiian Islands, all asbestos exposure in the state comes from commercial activity.


As a state made up of islands, shipping understandably is a very important part of Hawaii’s economy. This is especially true in the late 19th century and early 20th century with the growth of the whaling and fishing industries, and then even more so leading into World War II, when shipping was controlled by the military government. Today, more than 80% of the state’s goods are imported through Honolulu Harbor, which also sees the arrival of nearly 260,000 cruise ship passengers each year. Given the amount of asbestos used in ships, this makes for a lot of potential exposure over the years.


Asbestos has often been employed in agricultural machinery used during planting, harvesting, and processing crops. The sugar industry is particularly well known as an agricultural concern that has exposed a lot of workers to asbestos, and firms like the Hilo Sugar Company, Hutchinson Sugar Plantation Company, and Paauhau Sugar Plantation Company are all confirmed jobsites that have led to mesothelioma diagnoses. Other agricultural companies with known exposure to asbestos include the Hawaiian Pineapple Company, Dole Company, and Lahaina Plantation.


The U.S. Navy base at Pearl Harbor is certainly the most well-known military base in Hawaii, but the state’s islands also house a number of U.S. Army facilities, including a medical center and an airfield. Given the state’s position far from the mainland, the U.S. Coast Guard also operates two significant bases in Honolulu and Wailuku. Military use of asbestos is high, especially in naval ships, and each of these installations exposed military personnel, civilian workers, families, and others to the dangers of asbestos during the course of operation.

Power Plants:

Like many other places, Hawaii’s power plants have led to a lot of asbestos exposure for the individuals who keep the electricity flowing. Some of the worst offenders include Bechtel Power in Honolulu, the Hawaii Electric Light Company in Hilo, and the Maui Electric Company in Maui. Asbestos was often used to insulate power generating apparatus from the heat and electricity created during the process.

03. Shipyard Sites

Asbestos Shipyards in Hawaii

Since the first Polynesian travelers found the Hawaiian Islands by boat, those who lived there have maintained a rigorous shipping industry, eventually creating large shipyards and harbors for ocean-going vessels to be constructed, maintained, and repaired.

Pearl Harbor Naval Base

Pearl Harbor was an important base of operations long before the attack that drew the U.S. into World War II, with commercial shipping ties going back as far as the 1820s. Growth of the whaling industry and trade with Asia in the late 19th century led to a constant naval presence in Hawaii waters, but a permanent base was not established in the harbor until the island kingdom was annexed in 1899. After the 1941 attack, the naval base became the front line of defense in the Pacific War, and from 1943 until the end of the war in 1945, more than 5,500 ships spent time at Pearl Harbor’s facilities, causing an unfathomable amount of asbestos exposure for those who worked and lived there.

Honolulu Shipyard (Pacific Marine & Supply)

A private company providing shipbuilding and repair services to the U.S. Navy, Pacific Shipyards launched its first shipyard in Honolulu in 1944, during the last year or so of World War II. After the war, the shipyard continued providing services for military and commercial vessels, including constructing the free-floating platform used as the setting of the film Waterworld. Throughout the company’s history, workers at the shipyard have been exposed to asbestos in many different forms, as the material was used in many different applications aboard both marine vessels.

04. Exposure in Cities

Hawaii Cities with Known Asbestos Exposure

Provided below is a list of cities in the state of Hawaii where asbestos use in the workplace is known to have occurred. Click on a city below to see more detailed information about the specific job sites where asbestos exposure occurred.

05. Other Work Sites

Asbestos Exposure at Smaller Hawaii Sites

Asbestos exposure is also a problem if you look beyond the major cities and towns in Hawaii. Select a town to see the list of its job sites where asbestos exposure occurred. Asbestos exposure at any one of the work sites revealed could put a worker at risk to develop mesothelioma cancer.

Hawaii Directory of Asbestos Work Sites

Select a city to see a list of work sites where asbestos exposure occurred.

, Hawaii Jobsites Where Asbestos Exposure Occurred

  • Alexander & Baldwin
  • Alexander and Baldwin
  • Alexander Young Building
  • Aloha State Sales Company
  • American Factors Limited
  • American Sanitary Laundry Company
  • American Sugar Company
  • Bechtel Power Corporation
  • C and C, Inc.
  • C. Brewer & Company
  • California and Hawaiian Sugar Company
  • California Packing Corporation
  • Castle & Cooke, Inc.
  • Chevron Hawaii
  • Chevron Usa Inc
  • Craig & Company
  • Dillingham Petroleum Corp
  • Dole Food Company
  • Electric Automobile Company
  • Erra Plantation
  • Ewa Plantation Company
  • Ewa Sugar Mill
  • Gear Lansing and Company
  • Grove Farm
  • Grove Farm Company
  • Grove Farms Company Ltd.
  • Grumman Ecosystems Corporation
  • H Hackfield and Company
  • H R Worthington
  • H. Hackfeld and Company
  • H.R. Worthington
  • Haiku Sugar Company
  • Hakalau Plantation Company
  • Halstead Brothers
  • Hawaii Electric Light Company
  • Hawaii Water Works LLC
  • Hawaiian Agricultural Company
  • Hawaiian Agricultural Company
  • Hawaiian Agricultural Company
  • Hawaiian Can Products
  • Hawaiian Comm. and Sugar Company
  • Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company Ltd.
  • Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company
  • Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company
  • Hawaiian Commercial Sugar
  • Hawaiian Dredging Construction Company
  • Hawaiian Electric
  • Hawaiian Electric Company
  • Hawaiian Electric Company Inc.
  • Hawaiian Electric Kahe Power Plant
  • Hawaiian Electric Light Company
  • Hawaiian Electric Waiau Power Plant
  • Hawaiian Equipment Company
  • Hawaiian Linen Supply
  • Hawaiian Pineapple Company
  • Hawaiian Telephone Annex
  • Hawaiian Tuna Packers, Ltd.
  • Hilo Coast Processing Company Ltd
  • Hilo Drywall Company, Inc.
  • Hilo Electric Company
  • Hilo Electric Light Company
  • Hilo Electric Light Company
  • Hilo Electric Power and Refrigerator Company
  • Hilo Sugar Company
  • Honokaa Sugar Company
  • Honolulu Brewing & Malting Co. Ltd.
  • Honolulu Gas Company (Hawaii Gas)
  • Honolulu Iron Works
  • Honolulu Laundry Company, Ltd.
  • Honolulu Planing Mill
  • Honolulu Plantation Company
  • Honolulu Plantation Company
  • Honolulu Rapid Transit and Land Company
  • Hutchinson Sugar Plantation Company
  • Hydro-Blast, Inc.
  • Kaeleku Sugar Company Ltd
  • Kahe Power Plant
  • Kahuku Plantation Company
  • Kaiser Cement & Gypsum
  • Kalihi Pumping Station
  • Kanoehe Rauch Company
  • Kauai Electric Company, Ltd.
  • Kekaha Sugar Company
  • Kekaha Sugar Company, Ltd
  • Kikei Plantation
  • Kilauea Sugar Plantation Company
  • Kohala Sugar Company
  • Kohala Sugar Company
  • Kohala Sugar Company
  • Koloa Sugar Company
  • Laie Plantation
  • Lambert-Cole, Inc.
  • Laupahoehoe Sugar Company
  • Laupahoehoe Sugar Company
  • Laupahoehoe Sugar Company
  • Lewers & Cooke
  • Libby, McNeill & Libby
  • Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company of America
  • Mason Contractors Association of Hawaii
  • Matson Container Station
  • Matson SS Lines
  • Maui Electric Company
  • Maui Electric Company
  • Maui Electric Company Ltd
  • Maui Land Devlop and Pineapple Canning Corp
  • Mcbryde Sugar Company
  • McBryde Sugar Company
  • Naval Fleet Air Base
  • Naval Smoke Abatement Facility
  • Navy Department Bureau of Supplies and Accounts
  • Nuuanu Memorial Park & Mortuary
  • Oahu Ice and Electric Company
  • Oahu Sugar Company
  • Olaa Sugar Company
  • Olokele Sugar Company Ltd.
  • Onomea Sugar Company
  • Owens-Corning Fiberglas
  • Paauhau Sugar Plantation Company
  • Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard
  • Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard
  • Pepeeko Sugar Company
  • Pioneer Mill Company
  • Pioneer Mill Company Ltd
  • Puna Sugar Company, Ltd
  • R R Hind Hawai Plantation
  • Reciprocity Sugar Company
  • Schofield Barracks
  • Standard Oil
  • Tesoro Hawaii
  • The Plantation Inn – Lahaina
  • The Queen’s Medical Center
  • Troy Laundry Machinery Company, Ltd.
  • U.S. Naval Shipyard
  • United States Naval Station
  • Von Hamm-Young Company
  • W.A. Ramsay, Ltd.
  • W.A. Ramsey, Ltd.
  • Waiahole Water Company
  • Waiakea Mill
  • Waiakea Steam Plant
  • Waialua Agricultural Company
  • Waialua Agricultural Company Station
  • Waialua Plantation
  • Waialua Plantation
  • Waialua Sugar Mill
  • Waiau Power Plant
  • Wailuku Plantation
  • Wailuku Sugar Company
  • Wailuku Sugar Company
  • Waimanalo Sugar Company
  • Waimea Sugar Company
  • Yamada Transfer

Find Mesothelioma Doctors, Lawyers and Asbestos Exposure Sites Near You

Find Mesothelioma Doctors, Lawyers and Asbestos Exposure Sites Near You
Sources [+]
  • 1

    Bowker, Michael. Fatal Deception: The Terrifying True Story of How Asbestos is Killing America. New York: Touchstone, 2003.

  • 2

    Geological Research, Analyses and Services Programs. Naturally Occurring Asbestos Locations in the Contiguous U.S. and Alaska.

  • 3

    Krstev, S. et al. “Mortality Among Shipyard Workers: A Retrospective Cohort Study.” Occupational and Environmental Medicine, October 2007.