FEMA Trailer Auction - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

FEMA Trailer Auction

Spanky Assiter, Assiter Auctioneers Spanky Assiter, Assiter Auctioneers

Ryan Cody
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, TX - Concerns over the safety of FEMA travel trailers are surfacing here in Amarillo. Talking to some people today who are interested in buying one of the trailers, their major concerns seemed to center around what they look like.

But a few years ago the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) were more concerned with what you can't see.

335 of such trailers will be auctioned off in the Amarillo area tomorrow. But in 2007 and 2008 the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Centers for Disease Control tested more than 500 trailers given to displaced citizens after hurricane Katrina.

The tests were in response to multiple cases of poisoning from formaldehyde. A colorless gas used to make walls, furniture and cabinets in mobile homes.

"All travel trailers used formaldehyde during the time these were manufactured and that's why we are saying they shouldn't be used for permanent housing," Spanky Assiter of Assiter Auctioneers says.

Though Assiter Auctioneers is making no secrets about where these trailers come from, some people are still very concerned.

"We don't want to get sick. We don't want our children to get sick," one concerned shopper said.

Another said, "the mold is something that's concerning me."

But since there is no minimum bid on the auction, Assiter Auctioneers says many should sell anyway.

But owners should be aware of the issues from the past. "I would assume the worst case scenario," Spanky Assiter says.

After the Centers for Disease Control tested the trailers a few years ago, it was deemed they are only dangerous as permanent residences.

Which Assister Auctioneers says they are not recommending as the proper use anyway.

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