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CARB announced today that Lumber Liquidators, Inc. has agreed to pay $2.5 million dollars to settle claims that the company sold composite wood products in the state that exceeded regulatory formaldehyde emissions limits. In addition, Lumber Liquidators has agreed to implement an audit program for existing and new suppliers and a “Composite Core Testing Research Program” that would provide for random testing of core samples in accordance with ARB’s standard operating procedure for preparing finished goods samples for testing.
CARB reportedly had tested Lumber Liquidators laminate flooring samples obtained between September 2013 and May 2015 that had been marked as CARB compliant. According to CARB’s press release, some of the samples exceeded the state’s formaldehyde limits indicating that the company had “failed to take reasonable prudent precautions” to ensure compliance.
This is CARB’s first documented enforcement action on this regulation, and it may mark a shift in CARB’s willingness to take a more aggressive approach to ensuring compliance. In speaking on today’s announcement, CARB’s new Enforcement Division Chief Todd Sax provided that “[c]ompanies need to understand we expect compliance with our Rules, and we will hold those accountable who do not comply.” CPA President Jackson Morrill commented that, “CPA strongly encourages CARB to continue this focus on enforcement and oversight of the regulation to ensure a level playing field for all manufacturers of these products.
See CARB Press Release. More info: Gary Heroux