Trinity Marine Group became a publicly traded company in 1996, quickly seeing a rise in the shipyard ranks after. However, by 1997 the quality of production began to suffer and the company had problems meeting the expectations of clients. The reason behind this was the lack of skilled workers that produced poor quality products. After this blow to Trinity, Halter Marine Group, Inc. decided to purchase the majority of stocks from the Trinity Marine Group and added them to their huge collection of shipyards.
Many lawsuits followed the Trinity Marine Group after corrosion was found on multiple barges they produced. J. Russell Flowers and Florida Marine Transporters were two of the companies that filed lawsuits against the shipyard after they found massive corrosion on their transport barges. 18 of the companies barges sold to Florida Marine Transporters were found with corrosion.
In addition, the Trinity Marine Group has also been noted as a company that has asbestos in its shipyards and exposed employees to the dangerous material while working on ship repairs. Asbestos is the leading cause of mesothelioma and is found in many products that are quite common in ship repairs. Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that can be found in the mesothelium, a sac that protects and covers the body’s vital internal organs.
During ship repairs, asbestos is used for a variety of fireproofing and insulation purposes. It is used to protect pipes, boilers, turbines, circuit breakers, and any other ship part that may need to be insulated or fireproofed. However, asbestos tends to deteriorate when it is in close proximity to heat. Over time, asbestos becomes brittle and begins to crumble. Once this occurs, the chances of accidentally breathing in asbestos fibers are increased if no safety mask is used during removal or installation.
Inhalation of asbestos allows the fibers to lodge in the lung, chest, or abdominal cavities and become irritated over time. These irritations can develop into cancerous cells that will lead to mesothelioma. Symptoms of mesothelioma vary but are similar to a cold and include wheezing, shortness of breath, fatigue, anemia, coughing, hoarseness, or abdominal pain. Detecting mesothelioma in its early stages is a key component in treating this destructive disease.