The Groton Naval Base is located on the eastern bank of the Thames River in Groton, Connecticut. Originally a Navy shipyard, the Groton Naval Base became one of the most prominent submarine bases in the world. The Groton Naval Base continues to operate as a modern Navy shipyard at the forefront of new marine technology. With over 100 years of shipyard experience, Groton Naval Base submarines have evolved into modern nuclear powered warships that are an integral part of the U.S. Navy. The Groton Naval Base has been renowned as “The Submarine Capital of the World.”?

History of the Groton Naval Base

In 1872, the Groton Naval Base site was established as a Navy yard in Connecticut. The Groton Naval Base shipyard originally was used as a supplies station for the Atlantic Fleet small craft. During its early years, the Groton Naval Base constructed a number of water crafts for the U.S. Navy. The Groton Naval Base was converted into a submarine base in 1916 and named the Naval Submarine Base New London. During World War I, submarines and support crafts were housed at the Groton Naval Base. The U.S. Navy established schools and training facilities for naval officers and submariners. The Groton Naval Base was greatly expanded during World War II to accommodate wartime demands.  

Due to nuclear power advancements in submarine technology, the Groton Naval Base updated its operations and facilities following World War II. By 1959, the Groton Naval Base had become the largest submarine base in the world, employing more than 8,200 active personnel. The Groton Naval Base site became home to 70 tenant commands including the Commander Navy Region Northeast, the Naval Submarine School, and the Naval Submarine Support Facility.

Today the Groton Naval Base houses 21 attack submarines and Navy research vessels. The complex consists of 500 acres, 30 wharves, and even housing facilities for over 21,000 active employees. In addition to its renowned submarine services, the Groton Naval Base provides repair work for other marine crafts such as tugs, barges, ferries, and government vessels. In 2005, the Groton Naval Base was recommended for closure. After an investigation, the Base Realignment and Closure Commission allowed the Groton Naval Base to continue its operations. 

Asbestos & the Groton Naval Base

The Groton Naval Base has made enormous contributions to the U.S. naval fleet. Unfortunately, the Groton Naval Base used asbestos materials in many of its shipyard operations. The health dangers of asbestos were unknown until the 1980s and unprotected shipyard workers at the Groton Naval Base were exposed to high levels of asbestos for prolonged periods of time. Many shipyard workers, including those who worked at the Groton Naval Base, have developed life threatening diseases due to asbestos exposure.

Asbestos was an ideal material for ship construction and repair due to its ability to resist fire and high temperatures at many shipyards including the Groton Naval Base. Today the U.S. government regulates asbestos in the shipyard industry but older vessels may still contain asbestos. Groton Naval Base workers may have been exposed to asbestos in recent years through servicing older ships housed at the yard.

Asbestos is a toxic fibrous mineral and is extremely dangerous when inhaled. When Groton Naval Base workers dealt with asbestos containing materials, they likely disturbed asbestos fibers. When fibers are inhaled they can become lodged in the lungs, causing cancerous growths and life threatening diseases. Some of these diseases can 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 other organs

You should contact your physician if you think you have been exposed to asbestos at the Groton Naval Base. Asbestos diseases can take decades to become symptomatic. An early diagnosis can help to better manage some of these serious diseases. Authorities have estimated that nearly 100,000 shipyard workers, including workers at the Groton Naval Base, have died from asbestos diseases. Many shipyard workers have contacted attorneys to discuss their asbestos injuries. In recent years, shipyard workers at shipyards, including workers at the Groton Naval Base, who are injured from asbestos exposure, have filed lawsuits against the shipyards for asbestos injuries.  

Asbestos Injuries at the Groton Naval Base – Connecticut

If you or a loved one has worked or trained at the Groton Naval Base, you may have been exposed to asbestos. Please contact one of our Groton Naval Base asbestos attorneys to learn more about your rights and for a free and confidential case evaluation. You may be entitled to compensation for your asbestos related injuries.  

Published November 17, 2011 by