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.

Friday, September 28, 2012

I and the other lawyers in this case spent thousands of hours and millions of dollars in this case. I don't anticipate that I will make a cent and my firm will probably not be reimbursed for all of its expenses. I was involved in several trials, mock trials, juror focus groups. Vast majority of people simply felt like that it was bad that people got sick, but that it just didn't rise to "a federal case" since people received these for free. Many said these trailers were pieces of junk but not neccesarily "unreasonable dangerous." Also, most plaintiffs smoked or had other health problems unrelated to their time in the trailer. It's not fun to be continually attacked by companies because we represent people and then get attacked by the other side too because we couldn't make miracles.
The largest mass poisoning of Americans by their government, the exposure to high levels of formaldehyde in FEMA trailers after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, has resulted in what one of the former FEMA trailer residents calls: AMERICAN JUSTICE The Katrina survivors who FEMA knowingly exposed to formaldehyde in FEMA trailers get $300 bucks and the lawyers get over $20 million. That $300 isn't likely to pay for even one emergency room visit. AP's MICHAEL KUNZELMAN reports that "A federal judge gave his final approval Thursday to a $42.6 million class-action settlement between companies that made and installed government-issued trailers after hurricanes in 2005 and Gulf Coast storm victims who claim they were exposed to hazardous fumes while living in the shelters. ...Gerald Meunier, a lead plaintiffs’ attorney, said the deal provides residents with ‘‘somewhat modest’’ compensation but allows both sides to avoid the expense and risks of protracted litigation. ‘‘Dollar amounts alone do not determine whether a settlement is fair and reasonable,’’ he said. Easy for for the plaintiff lawyers to say when get to bank millions compared to hundreds for the people who got sick or died as a result of formaldehyde exposure. Here is another quote from the AP story: Engelhardt noted he received a letter from a woman whose 66-year-old mother, Agnes Mauldin, of Mississippi, died of leukemia in 2008 after living in a FEMA trailer. Mauldin’s daughter, Lydia Greenlees, said the settlement offers “very little” for what her family considers to be a wrongful death case. “I am saddened about the settlement in that I feel like it makes a mockery of my mother’s life,” Greenlees wrote. “I don’t want anyone to think for one second that I view this settlement as a fair trade for my mother’s life. I do not.” THE FINAL INSULT? FEMA is back to no longer testing emergency housing for formaldehyde before purchasing it. FEMA says they are just buying what is available for purchase on any trailer sales lot in America. So since the American public at large is not being protected from housing with elevated levels of formaldehyde, why should disaster victims be treated any better? So the manufactured housing industry gets to continuing using cheap, formaldehyde emitting products instead of using the safer alternatives to formaldehyde binders that now exist like Soyad.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Starch could replace formaldehyde in wood products

As we can see by the number of manufactured houses and even conventional houses that test high for formaldehyde, what is needed isn't reducing the formaldehyde content of product but eliminating it in favor of a binder that is non toxic to humans. The Green Chemistry Journal in an article "Starch as a Replacement for Urea-Formaldehyde in Medium Density Fibreboard" published recently says: Medium density fibreboard (MDF) is a ubiquitous product formed from wood flour and a formaldehyde-based resin. The use of the latter component causes some health and environmental concerns and its use is restricted. The current study shows that thermoplastic starch can be used in place of the thermoset resin to produce materials of similar mechanical strength but with clear environmental benefits. All of the components are compostable and the resin being a thermoplastic allows the potential for remoulding and recycling which has clear environmental impact benefits.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Congressional corruption continues in blocking proper regulation of carcinogens

For decades Congressmen bought and paid for by the formaldehyde industry have prevented this chemical from being properly labeled as a carcinogen and properly regulated to protect human health. Now that tradition continues with a Congressman from Montana who has put a rider on legislation that would remove funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) biennial Report on Carcinogens, a report mandated report by Congress that compiles existing and new research on carcinogens and supplies a list of chemicals with known and suspected links to cancer.

Forbes reports that, "The report sources its information and list from peer reviewed studies and is independently audited in its entirety before being published every other year. It is not linked to regulation of chemicals in any way, but that’s a whole separate issue.

"The issue at hand today is funding for the report, which Representative Denny Rehberg (R-Mont.) is attempting to block via a budget rider until the NIH complies with a 2012 congressional directive to have the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) conduct a review of formaldehyde and styrene and the Report on Carcinogens assessment of them. Environmental health advocates, and NIH staffers themselves, have argued that the report is already audited and comprised of peer-reviewed data, making an additional assessment unnecessary, but the directive stands. Now Rehberg wants to see funding for the Report on Carcinogens halted until the NAS assessment comes through, which could take as long as five years."