One of the leading shipbuilding and repair companies is the Hendry Corporation. Established in 1926 in Tampa, Florida, it is one of the leading shipyards and has received contracts from various organizations such as the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, Army Corps of Engineers, and the U.S. Army.
Tampa is the hometown to numerous shipbuilding and repair businesses, including the Hendry Corporation. Because of its location in a large bay with access to the Gulf of Mexico, this area’s major source of employment for local residents is the shipbuilding and ship repair industry. However, a grave concern for those in this business remains the notorious past use of asbestos.
Asbestos is a natural mineral that has been used as insulation and as a fireproofing material throughout ships. When these fibers are breathed into the lungs, a worker can possibly develop diseases that are related to asbestos inhalation. One of these diseases is the lung cancer known as mesothelioma. This is a cancer that is known to impact the lungs, heart, and even the abdomen. The period of time that mesothelioma resides in the body without showing symptoms generally lasts from 20 to 50 years. When symptoms finally do appear, it may be very difficult to treat the disease.
Those employed at any time by the Hendry Corporation have a strong chance that they were exposed to asbestos. Usually symptoms of mesothelioma appear similar to those of more common illnesses, including pneumonia. These mesothelioma symptoms include shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, coughing, chest or abdomen pain, husky voice, difficulty swallowing, loss of appetite, and weight loss. There are many shipyards across the nation that allowed workers to be in close proximity of asbestos-tainted products every day, which may lead to an increase in the rate of mesothelioma diagnosis in the years to come.