NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Nearly two dozen companies that manufactured government-issued trailers for storm victims after Hurricane Katrina have agreed to pay more than $14 million in a class-action settlement of claims the temporary shelters exposed occupants to hazardous fumes.
Plaintiffs' attorney Gerald Meunier said Tuesday that the proposed settlement could benefit tens of thousands of Gulf Coast residents who lived in travel trailers provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency after hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005.
Meunier said 21 trailer makers or their insurers will pay a total of $14.8 million to resolve the claims without any admission of wrongdoing.
A court filing Friday asks U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt to preliminarily approve the deal, which would be the largest mass settlement of claims over formaldehyde levels in FEMA trailers.
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