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Link between housing and infant deaths?

March 29, 2011 at 9:27 PM

FORT BRAGG, N.C., March 29 (UPI) -- Army officials say there is no evidence that an environmental problem may have caused the death of babies in military housing at Fort Bragg, N.C.

The Army says about a dozen infants have died unexpectedly in the last four years while their families were living in military housing at Fort Bragg, The (Raleigh, N.C.) News & Observer reported Tuesday. The most recent death occurred Feb. 24, when a 4-1/2-month-old boy stopped breathing.

Three of the deaths occurred at different times in the same townhouse. The house is now empty.

Military officials say the deaths have been investigated and there is no evidence that tainted drywall or other housing problems were responsible. Between 2007 and 2009, the infant mortality rate at the base was 5.3 per 1,000, significantly lower than North Carolina's or Cumberland County's.

Col. Michael Whetston, an Army spokesman, said extensive testing has found no structural or environmental problems with base housing.

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