Formaldehyde a Problem in FEMA Trailers - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/9/08

Formaldehyde a Problem in FEMA Trailers

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Thousands of Hurricane Katrina victims were left homeless and now lingering health problems may be blamed on the toxic trailers that were brought in for emergency shelter.  Those toxic trailers are at the center of a debate in Washington Wednesday. 

Apparently, the formaldehyde level in those emergency trailers was on average five times higher than traditional housing and, in at least one case, it was 60 times the normal amount.

Rep. Henry Waxman, (D) California, said, "No one was looking out for the interests of the displaced families living in FEMA trailers.  FEMA failed to do it's job and the trailer manufacturers took advantage of the situation."

Formaldehyde is a preservative that is used in some building materials, particularly particleboard, and sometimes carpet.  Prolonged exposure to high amounts of formaldehyde can lead to breathing problems, headaches, nosebleeds, and other ailments.

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