Senator Asks Feds to Investigate Lumber Liquidators

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) speaks during a press conference at the U.S. Capitol March 17, 2015 in Washington.
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Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) speaks during a press conference at the U.S. Capitol March 17, 2015 in Washington.

New York Senator Charles Schumer wants federal regulators to look into allegations that Lumber Liquidators' Chinese-made laminate flooring is tainted with formaldehyde.

Schumer made the announcement in front of a New York City Lumber Liquidators showroom on Sunday. "The federal government must step in to investigate whether this product is dangerous and if a recall or other disciplinary action must be taken," he said.

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Schumer asked the Consumer Product Safety Commission to initiate an investigation about formaldehyde in the company's laminate flooring, following a 60 Minutes report that said high levels of the chemical were found in Chinese-made laminates. The senator wants the CPSC, along with the CDC and EPA, to test and determine if the levels of formaldehyde in the products are dangerous.

The large amount of home repair and rebuilding that took place following Hurricane Sandy makes the issue a "top concern" in the New York, Schumer said. He also asked the Federal Trade Commission to investigate if Lumber Liquidators used "unfair and deceptive labeling practices" when it said its products were compliant with California's formaldehyde emissions standard.

The FTC had no comment. A CPSC spokesman said the agency had asked for and received the test data used by "60 Minutes," and that it was working towards making a statement.

"We look forward to addressing these matters with Sen. Schumer, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and all regulators and lawmakers who have questions about the specific product being discussed," Lumber Liquidators said in a statement.

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