Lumber Liquidators, a discount flooring supplier based in Toano, Virginia, is alleged to have been selling hardwood flooring imported from China that contains high levels of the chemical formaldehyde. The allegations against the company were made in a report by the television news program “60 Minutes.”
The flooring material is said to contain levels of formaldehyde that are higher than those permitted under California law. The chemical was found in the glue that holds together wood particles that form the interior core of the laminated hardwood flooring, according to CBS Evening News.
Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that causes illnesses such as myeloid leukemia and nasopharyngeal cancer. The powerful chemical can also cause respiratory problems and irritate the tissues of the eyes, nose and throat.
Formaldehyde is also a preservative used to temporarily maintain both human and animal remains. It was once commonly used to preserve laboratory animals for examination and dissection in high school and college biology classes.
In the “60 Minutes” report, officials at the Chinese factor admitted to an undercover team that the material contained in the flooring is not compliant with California regulations.
During an interview with journalist Anderson Cooper, Lumber Liquidators representatives reacted strongly and vowed to resolve the issue.
Though, as of mid-March, the company was still selling the Chinese flooring, it is also offering customers a means to test the indoor air quality in their homes to see if formaldehyde is present.
It’s also worth noting that the California standards violated by company’s flooring are expected to be adopted throughout the United States later in 2015.
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