Chinese drywall linked to health issues

TEXT OF STORY

Steve Chiotakis: Later this morning, we'll get the latest on the federal investigation into problems caused by Chinese drywall. The report could have big implications for homeowners, as Joel Rose reports.


Joel Rose: The drywall under investigation was used to build an estimated 60,000 to 100,000 homes, mostly in Florida, Louisiana and Virginia. It's been blamed for nose bleeds and breathing problems, among other things.

Scott Wolfson is a spokesman for the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, which is releasing the results of its latest investigation today.

Scott Wolfson: This is part of our commitment to families affected by this drywall issue to put scientific data out there as soon as it becomes available.

Last month, the commission said the drywall contains unusually high levels of several chemicals, including sulfur -- but stopped short of saying there was a link between those chemicals and any health problems.

That outraged Allison Grant, a Florida attorney who represents hundreds of clients with Chinese drywall in their homes.

Allison Grant: Most of the clients I spoke to, I mean my phone was ringing off the hook. They felt like they'd been slapped in the face.

Grant says today's report could determine whether homeowners with Chinese drywall can claim a significant write-off on their income taxes. The first lawsuit is scheduled to go to trial in January.

I'm Joel Rose for Marketplace.

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