The Alabama Dry Dock began its shipyard activities in 1917 and grew to become one of the largest marine production facilities in the nation. The Alabama Dry Dock shipyard was located in Mobile, Alabama, adjacent to a channel providing direct access to major shipping lanes and the Gulf of Mexico.

During World War I and II, the Alabama Dry Dock contributed enormously to the U.S. Naval Fleet. The Alabama Dry Dock shipyard was responsible for building barges, Liberty ships, tankers, and other vessels vital to the war effort. During its peak in wartime operations, the Alabama Dry Dock employed nearly 18,500 people to keep up with wartime production demand.

Following World War II, the Alabama Dry Dock began to shift its workload from shipbuilding to ship repairing. The Alabama Dry Dock prided itself on its wide range of quality repair and dry-docking services. In the 1980s, the Alabama Dry Dock was temporarily closed because of a decline in business and labor disputes. Atlantic Marine Holdings purchased the Alabama Dry Dock in 1989 and the site is currently known as Atlantic Marine Alabama.

Asbestos & the Alabama Dry Dock

Shipyard workers hold one of the most dangerous occupations for asbestos exposure. The Alabama Dry Dock was built a number of years before the dangers of asbestos exposure were realized. Prior to the 1980s, asbestos was used extensively in shipyard operations at the Alabama Dry Dock. Shipyard workers at the Alabama Dry Dock were exposed to high levels of asbestos for long periods of time. In recent years, many shipyard employees, including those who worked at the Alabama Dry Dock, have developed serious and potentially fatal diseases caused by asbestos exposure.  During their employment at an older shipyard, Alabama Dry Dock workers were involved in using asbestos materials and worked in vessels that were constructed with asbestos. Asbestos was an ideal material to use in ships because of its ability to retard flame, withstand high temperatures, and resist corrosion. The Alabama Dry Dock workers were likely to have come across asbestos in various areas of ships and machinery, including:

  • boilers 
  • turbines
  • electrical and plumbing insulation
  • pumps
  • steam pipe
  • incinerators
  • gaskets
  • valves
  • welding blankets
  • building insulation

When shipyard employees work with asbestos materials, a fibrous dust is released that can be inhaled or ingested. Asbestos fibers can become lodged in the lungs or protective lining of many of the body’s organs and cause life threatening diseases. Some of these serious diseases caused by asbestos exposure include:

  • Mesothelioma (a cancer of the protective lining that covers most of the body’s internal organs, including the lungs)
  • Lung cancer
  • Asbestosis (lung tissue scarring)
  • Cancer in a number of other organs

Many asbestos diseases can take years to become symptomatic. An early diagnosis can help better manage some of these severe diseases. If you think you have been exposed to asbestos at the Alabama Dry Dock, speak to your physician right away. Authorities have estimated that over 100,000 shipyard workers, including workers at the Alabama Dry Dock, have died from asbestos exposure. Shipyard workers concerned for their health have sought legal advice about their asbestos injuries.

Asbestos Injuries at the Alabama Dry Dock

If you or a loved one has worked for the Alabama Dry Dock, you may have been exposed to asbestos. Contact our office today to speak to an Alabama Dry Dock asbestos attorney for a free case evaluation and about seeking compensation for damages to your health from asbestos exposure.   

Published November 17, 2011 by