New London Naval Submarine Base (Groton Naval Base)

New London Naval Submarine Base, better known as Groton Naval Base or SUBASE NLON, was once a training center as well as a shipbuilding facility and submarine base, based out of Groton, Connecticut. As with most shipyards in the past, Groton Navy Base used asbestos heavily in numerous areas. Consequently, large numbers of shipyard workers developing fatal diseases, including mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer.

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 get a free Financial Compensation Packet. You’ll learn about the top mesothelioma lawyers in your area, how to get paid in 90 days, how to file a claim for the asbestos trust funds, and more.

Groton Naval Base

Groton Naval Base History

Groton Naval Base was established in 1868 after the U.S. Navy acquired 112 acres, located along the Groton, Connecticut’s Thames River. It started out as a coaling station, but on October, 15, 1915, it was changed into a submarine base, and began to grow increasingly, housing numerous submarine tenders and submarines, including the G-1, G-2, and G-4, under the submarine tender, USS Ozark. 

By World War I, Groton Naval Base, with $1 million approved by Congress, greatly expanded and added numerous buildings, additional land, barracks, a hospital, industrial facilities, and multiple workshops to help its substantial growth.

Another large expansion came in World War II, when the base expanded from 112 acres to almost 500 acres. A 100-foot tall structure, the Escape Training Tank, was created, which became the most recognizable part of the base.

One of the biggest accomplishments of the shipyard was launching the USS Nautilus in 1954. The USS Nautilus marked the first nuclear-powered vessel ever created. It was eventually retired in the 1980s, but can now be viewed as a historical landmark.

After several decades of building and maintaining submarines and training people, the base officially closed down in 2005. Yet, problems concerning asbestos at the base started many years prior to its closing. Then, in a reverse decision, the base was re-opened. It currently remains open as a Submarine Force Library, a museum, a training center for submariners, and a a Base Operations Support (BOS) infrastructure.

Groton Naval Base and Asbestos

One of the first issues regarding asbestos, although the base had already used the toxic mineral for many years, began in 1982 when an a survey that investigation faulty pipes indicated a large amount of asbestos present. Most of the asbestos was found in the piping at the Industrial Hygiene Branch, and in turn, the base’s Medical Center recommended removal.

However, the faulty, deteriorating pipes were posing difficult problems for the workers, and the renovation of the Industrial Hygiene Branch was an arduous task, and large amounts of asbestos was released. In addition, a leaky roof in the building released even more asbestos, placing people at risk.

In addition to the Industrial Hygiene Branch, asbestos was found all over the base, including industrial buildings, schools, training camps, vessels, walls, ceilings, insulation, shipbuilding facilities, and more. Although the base closed in 2005, a 2009 project began on Building 448, to remove all asbestos by replacing the ceiling, HVAC, pipes, insulation, coils, ducts, and pipes. Unfortunately, the abatement project came several decades after numerous workers had already been exposed to large amounts of asbestos.

Many of the former workers later developed toxic, life-threatening diseases, including malignant mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer, and asbestosis, after prolonged exposure to asbestos while working at the base. Per the United States Navy, over 200 asbestos-containing products were once used in shipyards and bases across the nation, including Groton Naval Base. The Navy, as well as numerous asbestos manufacturers, knew the risks of asbestos exposure to humans, yet continued to use it because it was affordable yet profitable for business.

Additional 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. Don’t forget to fill out our form to get our free Financial Compensation Packet, filled with information on the leading asbestos and mesothelioma attorneys. 

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