Blogathon for Pearlington

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Toxic Trailers?

As if worries about mold in everything left behind by Katrina's flood waters and high arsenic levels in the soil due to industrial waste being dumped from the Gulf back onto land are not enough, hurricane victims are also suffering from the effects of formaldehyde in their FEMA campers.

Formaldehyde is commonly used in the particle board and wood panels of the small campers, and, for whatever reason, there seems to be a pattern emerging of real health problems caused by breathing in too much formaldehyde in the FEMA campers.

According to this recent MSNBC article,
The Department of Housing and Urban Development limits the use of formaldehyde-emitting products in manufactured homes -- setting a standard of 0.2 parts per million for plywood and 0.3 parts per million for particleboard materials. But the agency does not regulate travel trailers or motor homes, probably because it was never anticipated that people would spend long periods of time living in them, said the Sierra Club’s Gillette.
These trailers were a way to get out of a tent, and nothing more. They are not acceptable housing on a long term basis, and now it appears they could be creating health problems that will last far beyond the current crisis.

We've got to remain committed to helping these families get back on their feet in safe, healthy, secure environments. Interest in coming to the Gulf Coast to help appears to waning as we approach the one-year mark, but needs are escalating every bit as fast as they are being resolved. If there is anything you can do to help get a family out of FEMA trailer, please don't forget how much your help is needed. People are being embalmed alive in those things--literally.


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