Consolidated Steel Corporation, also called Consolidated Steel Shipyard, was a steel and shipbuilding business that built numerous ships during World War II and two different shipyard locations: Orange, Texas and Wilmington, California. As with most other shipyards in the past, Consolidated Steel Corporation’s shipyards relied heavily on asbestos for its affordability, ease of use, and resistance to heat and fire. Unfortunately, the positive attributes of asbestos were outweighed when thousands of shipyard workers began developing asbestos-related illnesses.
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, you may be eligible for substantial compensation. There is currently over $30 billion in asbestos trust funds, set up for those who are victims to asbestos-related diseases. Fill out our form to receive our free Financial Compensation Packet. Our packet is loaded with information on leading mesothelioma attorneys in your area, how to file a claim for asbestos trust funds, how to get paid in 90 days, and more.
Consolidated Steel Corporation History
Consolidated Steel Corporation began in 1929 after a merger between Baker Iron Works, Llewellyn Iron Works, and Union Iron Works. The corporation began its operation in Long Beach California, but by 1941, built a new shipyard in Wilmington, California. The construction of the shipyard was funded by the United States Maritime Commission (USMC) on a $13 million contract.
Shortly after, the shipyard hired over 12,000 workers, including maintenance workers, pipe fitters, boilermakers, steel workers and more. The shipyard closed in 1945, but throughout 1941 until its closing, workers were continuously exposed to asbestos.
Insulation was the primary product that caused asbestos exposure at the shipyard. It was used in the construction of the shipyard, including pipes, walls, and more. Numerous workers began to develop mild symptoms of asbestos-related illnesses, but since the symptoms mimicked common ailments, they continued on with worker, inhaling in asbestos fibers on a daily basis.
In 1943, Consolidated Steel Corporation bought Ackerman Boat Works, located in Newport Beach, California. During World War II, the shipyard constructed 47-foot MTLs, as well as 96-foot TPs, for the United States Army. After the war, however, in 1947, Consolidated Steel Corporation sold the shipyard back to Ackerman.
Asbestos exposure is now known to cause life-threatening diseases, such as malignant mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer. Although the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) didn’t place regulations on its use until the 1970s, the mineral’s dangers fibers was something that was known about for several decades prior to the EPA’s regulations.
The Port of Los Angeles’ container terminal (TraPac) is now located where the Wilmington shipyard used to be.
Asbestos at the Orange, Texas Shipyard
In addition to the Wilmington, California shipyard, Consolidated Steel Corporation opens its fabrication plant in 1941, in Orange, Texas. However, a year after its opening, it started building vessels. From 1942 until 1945, Orange shipyard workerst built an array of vessels, including several different types of destroyers.
The Orange, Texas shipyard employed around 20,000 workers as production needs increased. As with the Wilmington, California shipyard, asbestos was heavily used throughout the Orange, Texas shipyard. Asbestos-containing insulation was used in flooring, pipes, bulkhead blankets, pipes, walls, and more. Consequently, the majority of the shipyard’s workers faced asbestos exposure each day they went to work.
Johns Manville, an asbestos manufacturer that faced thousands of mesothelioma lawsuits, was one of the primary asbestos suppliers to the Orange shipyard. In fact, numerous workers at the Orange, Texas shipyard filed their own claims against Johns Manville after developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses.
Johns Manville, however, denied liability against the Orange shipyard workers, and stated that they unaware at the time that asbestos was dangerous. A representative for Johns Manville cited scientific data that indicated that there was not enough information to indicate asbestos was indeed harmful. Regardless, Johns Manville lost so many asbestos-related lawsuits that it eventually filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and created an asbestos trust fund to handle all pending and future claims.
When the war ended, the Orange shipyard reverted back to fabrication, and was eventually acquired by the United States Steel Corporation (U.S. Steel).
Additional Help and Resources for Asbestos Victims
If you’ve been injured by mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, or asbestosis, keep in mind that there is a good chance that you’ll qualify for considerable compensation. Remember to fill out our from to get your free Financial Compensation Packet, with information on top asbestos and mesothelioma lawyers in your area.