‘New and improved’ FEMA trailers coming to Louisiana flood victims

LOUISIANA (WGNO) – Thousands of flood victims will be living out of “new and improved” manufactured homes from FEMA.

Gov. John Bel Edwards assured residents that the new FEMA temporary housing units are a big improvement over the notorious FEMA trailers provided after Hurricane Katrina.

The homes have separate rooms, instead of just the one communal space in the old trailers. And they’re also not laden with formaldehyde like the last bunch.

“Unlike many of the mobile homes we’ve relied on in the past, this next generation of temporary housing meets the rigid standards created by the Department of Housing and Urban Development,” FEMA officials said when announcing the new housing units.  “And they’re built to house survivors much longer than previous units used after disasters too – an important consideration because rebuilding can take months or even years.”

FEMA said the new and improved trailers have sprinkler systems for fire safety and indoor emergency strobe lights.

The company that manufactured the first round of FEMA trailers, which housed thousands of people in New Orleans and Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina, settled a class-action lawsuit in 2006 for $42.6 million. There were 55,000 plaintiffs in the lawsuit alleging that FEMA trailers made them sick because of high levels of formaldehyde.