A Coming Storm For Wireless?

  • Increased RF injuries may result from the proliferation of antennas to support expanding wireless activity.
  • As workers and the medical community begin to better understand those RF injuries, the wireless industry could face increased RF safety awareness issues.
  • Insurers no longer provide RF exposure coverage, so wireless providers may find property owners less willing to renew existing leases, or to lease space for antennas.
  • An RF safety protocol could help protect workers and the financial interests of the wireless ecosystem.

Jobsite hazards, both seen and unseen, exist everywhere in our nation.  All but a few of these safety challenges can be mitigated when corporations or industries decide to address them properly.  Imagine an enterprise sector that utilizes a known human hazard and knowingly turns a blind eye to the health and safety of third party workers. Yet, this is exactly the situation surrounding radio frequency (RF) radiation within the wireless industry.  Wireless carriers have long hidden behind the veil of federal compliance to avoid implementing a meaningful RF safety solution.

To date, the wireless industry has managed to stay relatively unscathed financially from injuries related to RF radiation. This is largely due to the medical community’s ignorance of the effects of RF injuries, either cognitive or physical.  If experts in the medical community have no understanding of RF radiation, how can a worker realize they have been injured when RF radiation is invisible, odorless, and tasteless? Workers have no way of connecting their overexposure incident with the manifestation of symptoms, which may not arise immediately.

An Invisible Threat with Detrimental Impacts

The risk of RF radiation overexposure from transmitting antennas has long been recognized as a human health hazard and is identified as such by the FCC.  RF radiation hazards from transmitting antennas can have thermal or cognitive/psychological injuries. Thermal injuries result in heating of tissue. Cognitive injuries manifest as memory loss, mood disorders, sleep disorders, and impaired or diminished cognitive function.

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