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CDC Raises Cancer Risk Estimate for Lumber Liquidators Flooring
Air Date: 02/22/2016
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CDC Raises Cancer Risk Estimate for Lumber Liquidators Flooring

LESTER HOLT, anchor: 

The Centers for Disease Control warned today that people who have certain types of flooring in their homes from Lumber Liquidators are potentially at a greater risk of cancer than previously thought. The CDC says it based an earlier estimate on incorrect data, and so the danger could be three times higher than first thought. Here's NBC's Tom Costello with a consumer alert. 

TOM COSTELLO, reporting: 

The CDC admits it simply miscalculated. It now says the potential cancer risk for people exposed to certain types of laminate flooring from Lumber Liquidators is not two to nine cases per 100,000 people as it first said, but, instead, it's three times that.

HALEY TRITTSCHUH (Lumber Liquidators Customer): It's never really a good feeling to find out that your kids are on a floor that could be potentially making them sick. 

COSTELLO: We first met Haley and Matt Trittschuh last year just after they spent $2,500 installing new laminate flooring. They say they have since ripped it out and settled with Lumber Liquidators after Chinese-made laminate flooring was shown to contain potentially dangerously high levels of formaldehyde. 

MAN #1 (Lumber Liquidators ad): It can be installed just about anywhere in your home. 

COSTELLO: Hundreds of thousands of families are thought to have installed the flooring but only a small fraction of it is believed to pose a risk. 

DOMINIC CHU: Shares of Lumber Liquidators sinking about 20% in early trading. 

COSTELLO: The company's stock under pressure today has dropped from a 105 to under $12 over the past two years. It's already stopped selling laminate flooring from China offering free test kits to all customers. Today, it said, "Lumber Liquidators has significantly strengthened our quality assurance procedures, from enhanced compliance protocols to product sample testing." The CDC is reviewing how it tested for exposure and says it will issue another report. Meanwhile, it's urging families who still have the flooring to try reducing their exposure by adding air conditioning, humidifiers, and increasing ventilation. Tom Costello, NBC News, Washington.