The Lake Union Drydock is one of the oldest shipyards in the Seattle, Washington area that still operates today. The Lake Union Drydock was founded in 1919 on the eastern shore of Lake Union as a repair shipyard. The Lake Union Drydock rests on 12 acres, including 3 dry docks that can service vessels up to 410 feet in length. The Lake Union Drydock operates as a modern shipyard with some of the newest technology in the ship industry, specializing in ship recycling and complex overhauls.

The Lake Union Drydock Facility

The Lake Union Drydock engages in a number of ship repair operations including:

  • complex overhauls of ships and equipment
  • major electrical installations
  • metal welding
  • sil-braze piping
  • widening and lengthening ships
  • keel replacement
  • building ventilation ducting systems

Asbestos & the Lake Union Drydock

Due to the potential for asbestos exposure, the Lake Union Drydock and other shipyards are dangerous places. Asbestos is a fibrous material that was used in ship construction and repair at Lack Union Drydock for its ability to retard fire, withstand high temperatures, and resist corrosion. Prior to the 1980s, the health dangers of asbestos were unknown and the hazardous material was used extensively at Lake Union Drydock. Workers at Lake Union Drydock wore no protective gear and were exposed to high levels of asbestos for long periods of time.

Working with asbestos-containing materials can release asbestos dust into the air. When inhaled or ingested, asbestos dust can become lodged in the lungs or the protective lining surrounding many of the body’s organs and cause severe and fatal diseases, such as:

  • 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

Today the U.S. government regulates asbestos in the shipyard industry, but older ships may still contain asbestos. Even in recent years, Lake Union Drydock workers have likely been exposed to asbestos through the repair and overhaul of old ships.. 

Authorities have estimated that over 100,000 shipyard workers have died from asbestos-related diseases, including some who have worked at the Lake Union Drydock. If you have been exposed to asbestos while working the Lake Union Drydock, you are at a major risk for developing a severe, and perhaps fatal, asbestos-related disease. Asbestos-related diseases can take decades to become symptomatic and more people are diagnosed every year. A number of asbestos lawsuits have been filed to help injured victims seek compensation for their asbestos-caused injuries. Many shipyard employees, including those from the Lake Union Drydock, have turned to lawyers for help regarding their injuries.

Asbestos Injuries at the Lake Union Drydock – Washington

If you or a loved one worked for the Lake Union Drydock, you may have been exposed to asbestos. Contact our office today to assess your legal options.

Published November 17, 2011 by