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Are All Trailers Toxic?

Do better trailers exist?

Widespread fears from these isolated events led to the introduction of some alternative options. Terradime introduced the Ecoplex™ last month and a number of other manufacturers have jumped onboard to produce “greener” RV’s. EverGreen Recreational Vehicles LLC has announced its E2 (Economical and Eco-friendly) Initiative, with the introduction of exclusive product enhancements across its full line of all composite travel trailers and fifth-wheels. Pricing on these newer generation trailers typically run between $30 to $40K, while the average “Katrina” trailer came in at less than $20K when first purchased.

Will people buy them?

Technology has allowed many items to be manufactured that are far superior to older low-tech versions. Yes, it would be possible to build a super light-weight carbon fiber aerodynamic trailer that does not off gas any toxins…but would it be affordable? Sadly, price still dictates the mindset of many individuals; this is demonstrated everyday with the continuous onslaught of inexpensive items arriving from China.

Affordable and healthy housing is a dream for many throughout the world, and for many here in the US. Alternative options are gaining in popularity, like homes built from used shipping containers, and home downsizing. The McMansion may have seen its peak and the “tiny house movement” is gaining momentum thanks to some pioneers like Dee Williams at Portland Alternative Dwellings, and Jay Shafer at the Tumbleweed Tiny House Company. One major obstacle to smaller affordable homes lie in zoning and building codes, Jay and Dee’s homes get around this, by being classified as “trailers.”

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Read more: Crafts & Design, Health & Safety, Home, Materials & Architecture, , , , , , ,

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3:33PM PST on Jan 2, 2011

great article, now I really got something to think of

4:36PM PST on Jan 1, 2011


2:34AM PST on Dec 26, 2010

This is great article

2:33AM PST on Dec 26, 2010

This is great article

1:56AM PST on Dec 21, 2010


10:57PM PST on Dec 20, 2010

I guess it's a kind of "Catch-22", isn't it? They were trying to provide emergency housing for large numbers of people as quickly as possible; and as others have mentioned, a lot of new materials give off unpleasant fumes when they're first installed.

10:25PM PST on Dec 20, 2010

The article asks, can better trailers be built?- of course they can, If the builders were building them for their friends and family, you bet they would be better. But it's usually poor people who live in them, and only because of their use due to Katrina on a large scale, did anyone question the inherent unhealthiness of the materials.

12:25PM PST on Dec 20, 2010

I think as an emergency shelter, they did make the right choice in supplying these. Because it was either these cheaper trailers, or quite possibly no home at all.

10:59AM PST on Dec 20, 2010

It is absolutely horrific that as wealthy, industrialized nation, we are producing toxic materials for human consumption and use. I am damned mad that any person (I could care less what the emergency) is being harmed by products that are known to be hazardous materials. The very fact that humans are becoming ill or developing diseases that will kill them because our government can't get it's act together is, unthinkable.

6:37AM PST on Dec 20, 2010

in so many places there are laws agains building small but you may build as big as you want. One way to get around them laws it to build big covered porches all around the houses to you have the Sq ft under roof they require. it also allows you to have a place in the shade to rest in a hot summer day bad news is you lose the solar gain in winter!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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