A class-action settlement approved on Thursday will give $42.6 million dollars back to people affected by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Victims of the storms claimed that they were exposed to hazardous fumes while living in trailers issued by the Federal Emergancy Management Agency (FEMA) and over two dozen private manufacturers.
A federal judge approved the settlement, which will hold those parties responsible. About 55,000 residents of Luisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas will be able to claim their portion of the money, seven years after the storms.
U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt oversaw the proceedings, hearing from the attorneys who drafted the resolution. According to the case, the government –issued trailers provided by FEMA for the hurricane victims held elevated levels of formaldehyde. FEMA will be responsible for $5.1 million of the settlement, while the two dozen manufacturers who constructed the trailers will be forced to pay out $37.5 million.