Wooden floors produced in Shanghai have been declared safe after testing, despite accusations that the flooring was carcinogenic.
Formaldehyde is commonly used to produce building materials and many household products and plastics but it is essential that the levels of formaldehyde used are minimal as it is a recognised human carcinogen.
Accusations came to light that the level of the chemical in the flooring was actually five times the country’s guidelines, which would have made the floors particularly dangerous.
A range of different samples of the floors were tested and, although several tests are still being performed, all results came back within the safe range.
Understandably Shanghai residents who have already purchased and installed the flooring remain concerned for their health.
Some individuals even cast doubt over the authenticity of the data from the tests and whether the floors tested were really representative.
There are strict controls in place to prevent flooring with potentially harmful levels of formaldehydebeing used or supplied in many areas, including Shanghai.
Exposure to high levels of the chemical, or long term low level exposure, may cause cancer according to some studies.
Short term reactions include irritated eyes, nose, throat and skin as well as nosebleeds, headaches, coughing and breathing problems.