Philadelphia is Pennsylvania’s largest city and one of the historically-important in the nation. The former capital of the U.S. before Washington D.C. was built, Philadelphia is a major hub for industry and transportation on the East Coast. Its many industrial facilities, including two airports, several railroad lines, and the former U.S. Naval Yard make Philadelphia a regional economic powerhouse. However, Philadelphia is located in a state known for its high incidence of asbestos-related illnesses among industrial workers.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may qualify for substantial compensation. Fill out our form to receive our free Financial Compensation Packet. Our packet is loaded with information on leading mesothelioma attorneys in Philadelphia, how to file a claim for asbestos trust funds, how to get paid in 90 days, and more.
Philadelphia and Asbestos Issues
Since its founding in 1692, Philadelphia’s industrial focus has undergone many changes. Although the city’s economy is based on information technologies, service industries, education, and tourism, Philadelphia used to be a major manufacturing center. In the 19th Century, the textile industry was the city’s economic staple. Later, as the U.S. became more heavily mechanized, railroad factories and shipyards became important to Philadelphia’s economic growth.The city’s location at the confluence of two rivers with an outlet to the Atlantic made Philadelphia suitable for the Navy, which built a major shipbuilding and repair facility that operated for over a century.
However, all these diverse industries shared a long-lasting connection to asbestos, a family of fibrous minerals prized for their ability to resist heat and corrosion. Asbestos products were used by many manufacturers in a multitude of ways. Steam engines on locomotives and ships had gaskets, pipes, and valves lined with asbestos. Textile mills used asbestos in machinery to protect it from friction-related heat. Homes and public buildings were built with insulation, roofing materials, flooring panels, cement and other components made from asbestos or laced with the fibrous minerals.
Major Job Sites Known to Have Asbestos Exposure Issues
Because asbestos was widely used until the early 1980s, untold numbers of Americans were exposed. Tradesmen, workers, and military personnel in the Philadelphia area worked in job sites where long-term exposure to asbestos was common. Consequently, many of them developed asbestos-related illnesses, including lung cancer, asbestosis, and malignant mesothelioma.
Philadelphia Naval Shipyard
From 1801 to 1970, the U.S. Navy built many of its warships and support vessels at the Naval Shipyard. The large facility also served as a major repair and refit center for the Navy’s Atlantic Fleet until 1995. The main Navy Yard was closed due to post-Cold War cuts in defense spending and cost the area 7,000 jobs. The city of Philadelphia acquired much of the property in the spring of 2000 and has redeveloped most of it for various uses. The west end of the site is leased by Aker Solutions, which builds tankers and other commercial ships.
Though the Navy used asbestos in its ships as early as the 1830s, the service utilized the dangerous minerals mainly in the 20th Century. Peak use of asbestos-containing materials (ACMs) at the Navy Yard occurred during World War II, when 52 new ships were built and over 500 were repaired or underwent major refits. Consequently, yard workers and ships’ crews were constantly in contact with ACMs and many of them have developed asbestos-related illnesses.
Other Shipyards and Ship Companies Associated with Asbestos Use in Philadelphia
- Hog Island Shipyard
- New York Shipbuilding Company
- Cramps Shipbuilding Company
- Sun Shipbuilding and Drydock Company
Hospitals Associated with Asbestos
Several of Philadelphia’s hospitals were created during the time period in which asbestos was heavily used. All hospitals associated with asbestos must follow state and federal guidelines regarding asbestos containment and emergency procedures.
- Byberry State Mental Hospital
- Chestnut Hill
- Holy Redeemer
- Mercy Douglas
- Moss Rehabilitation
- Mt. Sinai
- Pennsylvania State
- Roxborough Memorial
- Saint Agnes
- Temple University
- Thomas Edison University
- United States Naval
- Philadelphia VA Medical Center
Getting Legal Help in Philadelphia
If you’ve been exposed to asbestos and developed mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, remember that there is a good chance that you’ll qualify for compensation. Remember to fill out our from to get your free Financial Compensation Packet, with information on leading asbestos and mesothelioma lawyers in your area.