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Asbestos Exposure on the USS Boyd


Hull Number: DD-544
Type: Destroyer
Class: Fletcher
Built: San Pedro, CA

The USS Boyd was a Fletcher-class Destoryer, built by the Bethlehem Steel Company at their San Pedro, California facility during World War II. Measuring just under 377 feet, the ship carried a complement of 329 officers and men.

The U.S. Navy commissioned the USS Boyd in May of 1943, and assigned the vessel to the Pacific Fleet soon after. The Boyd earned eleven battle stars during the course of the war, and was involved in a number of major conflicts, including the Saipan Landings, the Battle of the Philippine Sea, and the invasion if Guam.

After the Japanese surrendered, the ship spent several years out of commission, but was returned to active service in 1950. It earned an additional five battle stars for its service in the Korean War, and was permanently decommissioned in October 1969 when it was transferred to the Turkish Navy.

Ships built for the U.S. Navy during the time of the USS Boyd regularly used asbestos in much of the on-board equipment. Boilers, turbines, electrical components, pumps, and valves were all often made using asbestos, and materials such as gaskets and packing were made from asbestos.

The boiler and engine spaces on these ships held an especially high concentration of asbestos, leaving Boiler Tenders, Machinists’ Mates, Firemen, and others who worked in these areas at an elevated risk of exposure.

Though the companies who provided the Navy with asbestos were typically aware of the risks associated with asbestos exposure, they did nothing to warn veterans on the USS Boyd or its contemporaries. This resulted in Navy veterans developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related.

Navy veterans diagnosed with mesothelioma and other asbestos-caused diseases have a right to seek compensation. Settlements can often offset or entirely cover the staggering costs of medical treatment, and may provide additional sums for pain and suffering endured. The law limits the time during which a lawsuit may be filed however, so it is important for victims to contact legal counsel soon after a mesothelioma diagnosis.

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