Laminate Flooring Products Linked to Serious Injuries
Several brands of popular home laminate flooring have been recalled in recent years for containing dangerous levels of formaldehyde, a toxic chemical that can lead to short term and chronic illnesses, including certain types of cancer with heavy exposure.
In recent years, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has addressed consumer complaints about several types of laminate flooring, including laminate flooring made in China between 2012 and 2014 and sold at Lumber Liquidators outlets in the United States. The watchdog agency tested formaldehyde levels released from specific types of laminate flooring and concluded the products pose a palpable danger to homeowners.
According to the CPSC report, some of the tested laminate flooring samples had levels of formaldehyde more than ten times greater than the acceptable limit set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA has said exposure may increase serious health risks for homeowners with laminate flooring. Lawsuits have been filed against flooring manufacturers and large settlements have been reached in recent years.
Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Ohio toxic tort lawyer representing plaintiffs nationwide in a wide variety of consumer product liability cases.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) have worked to establish an acceptable formaldehyde level that may be present in typical homes with laminate flooring, though health agencies differ on how exposure causes illnesses and cancers.
The CDC recommends that if you or family members are experiencing any related symptoms to exposure to laminate flooring or other wood products in your home, you should consult a physician and your local health department.
The National Toxicology Program classifies formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen. Epidemiological studies of workers exposed to formaldehyde in the workplace have reported a link between formaldehyde inhalation and cancer. Studies of workers who breathe in very high levels of formaldehyde over many years have shown a link to certain cancers including nasal, throat and lung cancer, and acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
Formaldehyde exposure from laminate flooring may not necessarily cause cancer in the short term, however chronic exposure to cancer-causing chemicals always increases personal cancer risk. Workers installing flooring are likely to be faced with the highest formaldehyde exposure levels, breathing in formaldehyde for long hours on a daily basis.
Wood products regularly contain formaldehyde-based resins because formaldehyde adhesives are a very effective wood bonding agents. Formaldehyde derivatives may be present in cabinetry, countertops, moldings, furniture, shelving, stair systems, flooring, support beams, trusses and pressed-wood products, such as particleboard, plywood, and fiberboard.
The following manufacturers sell laminate flooring products that allegedly contain formaldehyde:
• Lumber Liquidators Flooring
• Ark Floors
• CFL Wood Flooring Limited
• Surfaces Limited
• Eternity Floors
• Floor & Decor Outlets of America Inc.
• Lowe’s Co. Inc.
• Floor & Decor Outlets of America Inc.
• Home Depot
• Tecsun Flooring
• Flooring Liquidators
• Build Direct
• L.A. Hardwood
• Lawson Floors
• Tropical Flooring
The presence of formaldehyde and other toxic chemicals may be more prevalent in homes than previously realized. Formaldehyde is used to produce many wood products, including a wide variety of pressed wood products. Pressed wood products are used in the construction of furniture, kitchens and flooring, and are commonly used in caravans and mobile homes. Various pressed wood products are used in construction sites with structural ramps, overhead protective barriers and runways.
Pressed wood products are sheet materials with wood in the form of strips, veneers, chips, or fibers. The wood particles are bound together by formaldehyde-based resins. Some common pressed wood products include:
• Laminate flooring
• Wood paneling
• Floor underlay
If you have fallen ill after working with laminate flooring, or have a home partly constructed with toxic pressed wood materials, and have questions about the legal remedies available to improve quality of life and medical care, contact The Lyon Firm (800) 513-2403. You will speak directly with Mr. Lyon, and he will help you answer these critical questions.