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FEMA trailer homes headed for displaced Sandy victims

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Homes that are devastated by fire and the effects of Hurricane Sandy are seen at the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York
Homes that are devastated by fire and the effects of Hurricane Sandy are seen at the Breezy Point section of the Queens borough of New York

(Reuters) - The Federal Emergency Management Agency is providing mobile homes to hard-hit areas of New York and New Jersey where residents were displaced by Superstorm Sandy, FEMA's chief said on Thursday.

The trailers will be delivered to storm-struck towns in those states, agency head Craig Fugate told reporters during a conference call briefing.

Homes in New York and New Jersey suffered some of the greatest damage in the massive storm.

Fugate did not know the number of trailers involved and said their final destination was still under discussion.

"We're working on which sites they are going to go to," he said. "It's HUD-approved housing, often called mobile homes."

FEMA has already provided temporary housing such as hotel rooms to residents of hard-hit Long Island, the coastal suburb east of New York City. He said some people have had to travel as far as Albany, about 150 miles north of New York City, to find available temporary housing.

FEMA trailers provided to displaced residents in the U.S. Gulf Coast area by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 triggered a lawsuit in which people claimed that living in the government-issued housing exposed them to elevated levels of formaldehyde.

A $37.5 million settlement in the case against the trailer manufacturers was approved by a federal judge in September.

(Reporting by Barbara Goldberg; editing by Philip Barbara)

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