About ToxicTrailers.com

ToxicTrailers.com was launched after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 when the government spent more than $2 billion on FEMA trailers with high levels of formaldehyde that sickened thousands of people. The FEMA trailer tragedy exposed what is a widespread problem in RVs, mobile homes, modular buildings and even conventional buildings that use pressed wood products. Unfortunately, as we approach the tenth anniversary of Katrina, formaldehyde regulations are not being enforced in the U.S., and people's health is at risk. If you are having burning eyes, congestion, sore throat, coughing, breathing difficulties, frequent sinus infections or rashes, and difficulties concentrating, you may have a formaldehyde problem. For questions or to share your story, write 4becky@cox.net.

Monday, May 7, 2007

FEMA's tests show VERY HIGH formaldehyde levels

After stalling for six months FEMA has finally released the results of their testing of formaldehyde levels in FEMA trailers. There were even higher levels of formaldehyde in these new, unused trailers than we found in our Sierra Club tests. What is shocking is how high the levels started out! 1.2 ppm is enough to pickle you quick.
EPA and the American Lung Association recommend a limit of .1 ppm. So the average of .3 ppm found in FEMA’s testing is cause for alarm. At that high a level, people have trouble staying in the camper because of burning eyes and throat and chest irritation. We just tested a family whose FEMA trailer came in at that level and they have spent over $700 on medical bills.
FEMA should immediately provide air purification systems to EACH FAMILY still living in these toxic trailers. Ventilation isn’t the answer…

FEMA Study: Ventilating Travel Trailers Can Significantly Reduce Formaldehyde Emission Levels
Release Date: May 4, 2007
Release Number: HQ-07-061

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said today that its study of air samples collected from travel trailers in the Gulf shows that formaldehyde emission levels in the units can be significantly reduced through adequate ventilation.
FEMA initiated the study in response to concerns expressed about formaldehyde in the trailers and because of the high number of the units used as temporary housing following hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The objective of the study was to validate the most effective measures for lowering formaldehyde concentrations in travel trailers.

…According to the evaluation report provided to FEMA by ATSDR, the average concentration of formaldehyde per day in the units using open window ventilation dropped below 0.3 ppm after four days of ventilation and remained low for the rest of the test period. Average, per-day levels in the test group of trailers using air conditioning only with one open static vent in the bathroom remained above 0.3 ppm for all but two days of the test period. The level for health concerns for sensitive individuals was referenced by ATSDR at 0.3 ppm and above.

For the entire FEMA press release, go to http://www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=36010