compassionate condescending conservative response to the people of the Gulf Coast living in FEMA trailers with unhealthy levels of formaldehyde....
WASHINGTON — Complaints that mobile homes and trailers housing hurricane Katrina and Rita victims have unhealthy levels of formaldehyde were dismissed by Federal Emergency Management Agency Director David Paulison on Tuesday.
Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., asked Paulison about the complaints at a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on FEMA's ability to respond to the 2007 hurricane season.
Paulison said he was unaware the trailers posed any health threats.
The Sierra Club and other environmental groups, however, say high levels of formaldehyde are responsible for some of the health problems suffered by hurricane victims. More than 50,000 families displaced by Katrina and Rita still live in FEMA trailers and mobile homes.
After the hearing, Paulison told reporters he was aware some trailers and mobile homes have high levels of formaldehyde gas. But he said it is the responsibility of hurricane victims to rid themselves of the danger.
"We've told people they can air those trailers out," he said. (emphasis mine)
Despite what Paulison thinks it's not as though people are too lazy or stupid to have tried that....
Becky Gillette, vice chairman of the Mississippi chapter of the Sierra Club, said testing of some FEMA trailers and mobile homes showed elevated levels of formaldehyde, even those that have been aired out for months.
"We're getting high readings in trailers that are 20 months old," she said.