Anti-Phone Tower Leaflet Criticised
Published on: 2nd Sep 2005
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
The UK's advertising standards body the ASA has upheld complaints against a company that sold "shielding" to protect homes from so called dangerous base station radio emissions. Most notably amongst the hype and misinformation in the advert was the claim that the value of homes near a base station would halve taping into the UK's current favourite topic rising house prices.
The advertisements were headlined "Are you in danger from mobile phone mast emissions". Text stated " ... Masts emit EMFs - Electromagnetic Fields ... Your property can reduce in value by up to 50% ... Keep yourself and your family safe from EMF exposure and preserve the value of your property. Act now and install an effective shielding system. The longer you delay the more you are at risk from the dangers of EMF radiation ... homes with an effective bettersafe shielding system can expect to sell quicker than homes without it ... Frequently asked Q - What are the dangers associated with living near a mobile phone mast? ... Phone masts issue 'pulsed' radiation at low frequency rates. These are close to the brain's natural frequencies - It has been shown that if phone mast radiation exposure is prolonged, our immune system becomes weakened and consequently after a while illness ensues. Q - I live near a mast what type of illness should I worry about? Masts destroy your immune system over a period of time. People show different symptoms, some people are more prone to illnesses than others. If you feel tired, weak or have regular violent sickness you need to act fast. The evidence is growing by the day that the long term exposure to masts cause Cancer, Leukaemia, Alzheimer's, Pre-senile Dementia (some experts predict some children living or going to School near masts may not make their 30's before becoming senile), Motor Neurone Disease and many more. Our brains interpret the microwave pulsing emitted from base stations as bright light. As a result of this, people trying to sleep next to one experience difficulty and tend not to get the vital REM deep sleep needed to replenish the body ... Q - I live near a Mast what can I do? You have the choice of moving away or protecting your home from the transmitter by installing a system. If you move away there is a good chance there will be a mast near your new home or there will be one there soon ... Q - There is a mast near me will this affect my home value? There is absolutely no doubt the value of any property situated near a mobile mast will be affected ...".
The complainants challenged whether Better Safe Homes could substantiate the claims "Masts destroy your immune system over a period of time" and "long term exposure to masts cause Cancer, Leukaemia, Alzheimer's, Pre-senile Dementia ..., Motor Neurone Disease and many more".
The Authority itself also challenged whether Better Safe Homes could substantiate the claims that "some experts predict some children living or going to School near masts may not make their 30's before becoming senile" and "Your property can reduce in value by up to 50% ... There is absolutely no doubt the value of any property situated near a mobile mast will be affected".
In reply, Better Safe Homes said they had gathered the information in the mailing from various Internet sites. They sent links to the websites of lobby groups, pressure groups and manufacturers of microwave radiation shields. The claims were taken directly from the website of one of the manufacturers of microwave radiation shields. They said they had received no complaints or enquiries about the mailing.
The ASA considered that, although there was an ongoing debate about whether mobile phone masts were a danger to human health, the evidence was not conclusive and indicated a need for further research. They also noted Better Safe Homes had not sent published scientific studies that substantiated the claims in their mailing. The ASA concluded that the claims were misleading and could cause fear or distress without good reason, and told Better Safe Homes not to repeat the claims.
The ASA also considered that Better Safe Homes had not sent evidence that proved that mobile phone masts reduced property values by up to 50% and concluded that the claim was misleading and told Better Safe Homes to remove it."