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Chinese Drywall Probe Being Conducted by Florida AG

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The Florida Attorney General’s office is the latest governmental entity to confirm that it is conducting a Chinese drywall probe.  According to BradentonHerald.com, investigation centers on Knauf Plasterboard Tianjian and L&W Supply Corp., and whether they engaged in deceptive sales or marketing practices in relation to the drywall scandal.

Other agencies investigating the drywall debacle include the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, BradentonHerald.com said.   The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is also testing the drywall to see if it can be safely disposed in landfills.
BradentonHerald.com said that the Florida Attorney General’s office would not comment on its criminal probe of Knauf and L&W Supply, other than to confirm its existence.  However, the chief toxicologist with the health department confirmed that he has been consulting with its Bureau of Economic Crimes.

A spokesperson for Knauf told BradentonHerald.com that it is “cooperating fully” with the Florida Attorney General’s investigation.

Since January, the Florida Health Department has received more than 150 complaints about drywall that has polluted homes with a putrid, “rotten-egg” smell. Many homeowners have also complained that the fumes are causing air conditioning coils and other metals to corrode.

Late last week, the state health department released preliminary results from tests of three samples of Chinese drywall.  Those tests found that the Chinese drywall contained higher levels of sulfuric and organic compounds than an American sample tested.  The report recommended further testing to determine whether the organic or sulfur compounds detected where to blame for the problems seen in Florida homes.

The report also said the tests found that Chinese drywall gave off a sulfur odor “when exposed to extreme heat and moisture. It is clear that exposure to moisture accelerates the release of volatiles from the drywall.”

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