Starting out in 1973 as a small facility for repairing and rebuilding fishing vessels and other small ships, Seward Ships Drydock has grown to become the preferred choice of small, medium and large sea-going vessels in need of maintenance, parts and repairs. The company has built a very strong reputation of providing quality service at the most affordable prices.
Sitting on the shore of Resurrection Bay in Seward, Alaska, Seward Ships Drydock has some heavy duty equipment that allows it to lift ships up to 120 feet long completely out of the water. They provide a number of exterior maintenance services such as sandblasting the hull and repainting the ship. At the facility, they are also able to fabricate parts, do mechanical repairs, and tend to the hydraulic and electrical systems. Welding is yet another service that the highly-trained crew does with unmatched skill and efficiency.
Equipment that helps make it possible to perform work on some vessels as large as 350 feet in length includes a 5000-ton-Synchro-Lift and a 250-ton Travelift. The full service shipyard also has a complete 300-ton rail system that branch off to several berths, making it capable of servicing several ships at once. There are actually 3 fully equipped berths: two 180-foot berths and one 350-foot berth.
Starting out as a small facility mostly for local fishermen and their fishing boats, this facility has since grown to a major operation. Over the years, the company purchased additional property and added more equipment and capabilities to handle the ever-increasing work load. Today, Seward Ships Drydock sits on 11 acres in the Seward Marine Industrial Center.
Being located in Alaska has not been a detriment to the company. In fact, Seward Ships Drydock has taken business away from larger and more easily accessible drydock facilities in Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington. The Navy is also one of the many customers that Seward Ships Drydock serves. However, many such facilities were reported to have used a carcinogen called asbestos in production. This mineral, once inhaled, causes a cancer called mesothelioma. Employees and their relatives may have been exposed to the dangers of asbestos without their knowledge of the risks.
Seward Ships also used asbestos in its daily operations until the 1980s, putting their employees at risk. Those employees most likely to be exposed to asbestos include employees who worked on ship insulation, floors, boilers, turbines, pumps, steam pipes, valves, gaskets and incinerators. Fortunately, this facility only existed a few years before increased asbestos knowledge led to its regulation, meaning far fewer employees face the dangers of developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases that so many other shipyard employees faced.