After the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it incorrectly assessed the cancer risk associated with Lumber Liquidators’ flooring, shares of the company’s stock plunged more than 20% at their worst levels Monday, reports MarketWatch’s corporate news editor Ciara Linnane.
Following a “60 Minutes” report last year alleging that China-sourced laminates sold by Lumber Liquidators contained levels of formaldehyde that far exceeded California emissions standards, and that wood was incorrectly labeled at its source, the CDC launched an investigation. Its recent testing had used an incorrect value for ceiling height and therefore underestimated the cancer risk.
As a result of the CDC’s flawed testing, “the health risks were calculated using airborne concentration estimates about 3 times lower than they should have been,” the agency said in a statement.
After correcting the model, the CDC said the company’s flooring can create respiratory issues for people with asthma or related illnesses, and can cause irritation for the eye, nose and throat for anyone else.
More importantly, “the estimated risk of cancer is 6-30 cases per 100,000 people,” and not the two to nine cases per 100,000 people previously reported, according to the statement.