Northwest Marine Ironworks was one of the oldest ship repair contractors in Portland, Oregon. Northwest Marine Ironworks contributed significantly to marine iron work production during war time. The Northwest Marine Ironworks repair and rebuilding facility serviced many naval and commercial vessels over the years. 

Throughout the years, Northwest Marine Ironworks employed:

  • Shipyard workers
  • Technicians
  • Plant workers
  • Dock workers
  • Engineers
  • Welders 
  • Supervisors
  • Office staff

The Northwest Marine Ironworks was one of the most affluent and major ship repair facilities. Unfortunately, the Northwest Marine Ironworks facility met its decline in the 1980s. The oil crisis significantly affected the business and income of the Northwest Marine Ironworks facility. It was forced to file for bankruptcy in 1989.

Asbestos & Northwest Marine Ironworks

Unfortunately, many Northwest Marine Ironworks workers were likely exposed to asbestos. The dangers of asbestos exposure were unknown until the 1980s and, so, precautions were not taken when handling asbestos. Asbestos was used extensively at the Northwest Marine Ironworks facility. Asbestos’ resistance to high temperatures and friction, along with its flame retarding ability, made it an ideal substance for use in ship building and repair.

At the Northwest Marine Ironworks facility, asbestos was in ships:

  • Pipes
  • Boilers
  • Incinerators
  • Plumbing
  • Ventilation

When asbestos materials are manipulated, asbestos fibers may become airborne. In the tight, poorly ventilated ships, airborne asbestos fibers are likely to be inhaled. When inhaled, asbestos fibers can become lodged in the lungs or protective lining surrounding the body’s organs and cause severe and fatal health problems including:

  • 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 shipyard workers do not exhibit symptoms of asbestos-related diseases for years. As a result, many Northwest Marine Ironworks workers who were exposed to asbestos years ago are just beginning to develop these serious diseases.

Asbestos Injuries at Northwest Marine Ironworks – Oregon

If you or someone you love worked at the Northwest Marine Ironworks facility and have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, contact us today to determine if you have a case and are entitled to compensation.

Published November 17, 2011 by