La double peine des rescapés de Katrina

In the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, a division of the Department of Homeland Security, placed nearly 150,000 homeless families into provisional mobile homes and travel trailers. At the time, FEMA estimated that the "temporary housing units" could house displaced families for as long as 18 months. For many, that stay has been extended repeatedly. Nearly three years after the hurricanes swept the Gulf Coast, more than 35,000 families remain in tiny trailers as the emergency management agency struggles to find alternative housing. A Feb. 14 report by the Centers for Disease Control (summary below and on the following three pages), has some bad news for those families: The air inside many FEMA trailers contains up to 40 times the normal level of formaldehyde gas. High level and prolonged exposure to formaldehyde, a common embalming ingredient, causes "headaches, dry eyes, nasal mucus, and nausea," and can lead to asthma and cancer. Efforts are under way to relocate the trailer residents, especially "those who

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