Details of the settlement involving a major Chinese drywall manufacturer and several defendants emerged on Thursday in New Orleans federal court.
As ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald Tribune reported, drywall manufacturer Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin, several insurers, and drywall supplier, Interior Exterior Building Supply, will begin a pilot program, in which the companies will pay to remove the drywall and wiring from 300 homes built with Knauf board.
The pilot program will begin with 40 homes that the attorneys have already determined are built with at least 95 percent Knauf drywall.
The repairs--which include the replacement of all drywall, wiring, copper pipes, the air conditioning systems, fire safety equipment and all damaged fixtures--will be reviewed by an independent environmental firm after the work’s been completed.
The total amount that Knauf pays could be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. The procedure can cost about $100,000 per home and plaintiffs’ attorneys allege that there are 3,000 homes affected.
Attorneys for Taishan Gypsum Ltd., a drywall manufacturer with ties to the Chinese government, do not appear interested in participating in the pilot program.
"They absolutely do not understand why their high-quality drywall allegedly emitted excessive amounts of hydrogen sulfide," Joe Cyr, the company’s attorney said in court on Thursday. "We're not right behind Knauf in any kind of settlement negotiations."
For more details, read the Sarasota Herald-Tribune story.