USS Macabi SS-375 (1944-1971)

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The USS Macabi SS 375 was a submarine for the United States Navy during World War II. The submarine got its name from a type of fish called macabi that lives in the tropical seas. This submarine was first launched in September of 1944. The length of the USS Macabi SS 375 was 311.8 feet. The engines were 5400-hp diesel engines. It was built by Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company in Wisconsin. The USS Macabi SS 375 traveled through Lake Michigan, the Chicago Canal, and the Mississippi River where it docked in New Orleans for three days before it left for operations off Panama. The submarine did final training at Pearl Harbor in June of 1945.

Action in World War II

The Macabi was first stationed in the Caroline Islands, performing lifeguard duty near Truk.  Soon after, she was forced to dive to avoid a bombing raid.  The damage necessitated returning to Guam for repairs, and by the time she once again headed out to Truk, the war was over.  She arrived at the Mare Island Navy Yard for an overhaul, and in June 16, 1946 the submarine was decommissioned.

After the War

The Macabi remained inactive until April of 1960, when it was loaned along with the USS Lamprey to the Argentine army.   The Macabi’s name was changed to the ARA Santa Fe and put in the command of Capitan Julio Aureggi.  After serving in Argentina for eleven years, she was finally sold to the country in 1971, but broken up for spare parts the next year.

Asbestos in Navy Ships

Although an essential component of the naval fleet, especially throughout conflicts of the last century, submarines also pose a lasting health risk to soldiers serving on them. However, these risks extend beyond the inherent dangers that existed while operating the vessels during military conflicts. Unfortunately, products containing asbestos were also common aboard submarines because of the material’s high resistance to heat and fire. Despite its value as an insulator, asbestos fiber intake can lead to several serious health consequences, including mesothelioma, a devastating cancer without cure. Furthermore, the enclosed environment of submarines put servicemen at an even higher risk of exposure. Current and former military personnel who came into contact with or served on submarines should seek immediate medical attention in order to detect possible health consequences associated with asbestos exposure.


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