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October 7, 2008 | Mary Engel, Times Staff Writer
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention failed to act for at least a year on warnings that trailers housing refugees from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita contained dangerous levels of formaldehyde, according to a House subcommittee report released Monday. Instead, the CDC's Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry demoted the scientist who questioned its initial assessment that the trailers were safe as long as residents opened a window or another vent, the report said.
October 10, 2010 | By Alene Dawson, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Controversy is swirling around a pricey and much-heralded hair-straightening treatment after researchers in Oregon announced recently that they had found that the formula contained the dangerous chemical formaldehyde, even in packages labeled formaldehyde-free. The company behind the Brazilian Blowout responded with a series of statements on its website, first maintaining that the formula contains no formaldehyde and taking issue with Oregon's test methods, then saying it conducted its own tests and concluded that the formula does indeed contain the chemical but in a trace amount that is "considered safe and allows for use of the term 'formaldehyde-free.' " Meanwhile the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health and other state agencies are also investigating the product and others like it, which have been the subject of complaints from some customers and hairstylists who've reported health side effects after using the treatments.
April 27, 2007 | Janet Wilson, Times Staff Writer
California air regulators Thursday unanimously passed the world's toughest controls on toxic formaldehyde in wood products widely used in kitchen cabinets, countertops and other construction. Environmentalists, public health advocates, and manufacturers and distributors of formaldehyde-free wood cheered the news. Formaldehyde, widely used as a glue in wood veneer, plywood and other construction materials, has been shown to cause throat cancer, respiratory ailments and other problems.
The Riverside County coroner's office willfully allowed its workers to be exposed to excessive levels of cancer-causing formaldehyde and failed to protect them with proper respirators, Cal/OSHA officials charged Wednesday. Because of the findings, Cal/OSHA Deputy Chief Mark Carleson said his office will consider conducting inspections at other workplaces that use the chemical, including other coroner offices and funeral homes.
July 25, 2000 | From Times Wire Reports
The U.S. military issued a public apology for dumping formaldehyde into the Han River, a main source of drinking water for Seoul's 12 million people. It was the first public apology issued by the U.S. military in South Korea since its deployment here in the Korean War. Earlier this month, the military admitted releasing 20 gallons of formaldehyde into the Han River in February. The U.S.
July 24, 2009 | TIMES WIRE REPORTS
The Federal Emergency Management Agency took too long to respond to reports of dangerous levels of formaldehyde in trailers delivered to victims of 2005 Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, exposing people along the Gulf Coast to possible health risks, the Homeland Security Department inspector general reported. The report marked a stinging reprimand of FEMA and its slow response to reports in 2006 that air in some trailers registered dangerously high levels of formaldehyde, which can cause cancer and respiratory illness.
October 4, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
The federal government is not immune from lawsuits claiming many Gulf Coast hurricane victims were exposed to potentially dangerous fumes while living in trailers it provided, a federal judge ruled in New Orleans. U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt cited evidence that the Federal Emergency Management Agency delayed investigating complaints about formaldehyde levels in its trailers because it might be held legally responsible. The preservative can cause breathing problems and is classified as a carcinogen.
November 29, 2010 | By Joe Graedon and Theresa Graedon, Special to the Los Angeles Times
I read with interest that eating three almonds before or after a meal could help with heartburn. Do you see any problem with the almonds being chocolate-covered? We're afraid so. Although they are delicious, chocolate-covered almonds are unlikely to be helpful. That's because chocolate may relax the lower esophageal sphincter, the ring of muscle that separates the stomach from the esophagus. Heartburn happens when this muscle relaxes and allows acid to splash back up into the swallowing tube.
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