Cell tower fears overblown, better service is needed

Olga Sheean’s dramatic letter about cell phone/tower radiation (The NEWS, July 28) waved a red flag for me.

Olga Sheean’s dramatic letter about cell phone/tower radiation (The NEWS, July 28) waved a red flag for me. I am sorry Sheean had to move to French Creek “to escape the excessive radiation in Vancouver.” I am also sorry that if a cell tower is activated at the intersection of Sunrise Drive and the Island Highway, she will “have to move again or I won’t survive.”

Sheean’s concerns stem from research done by “Canadian doctor” Magda Havas. Havas is not a medical doctor. Havas is a PhD whose interests focus on “The Truth About Wired and Wireless Technologies,”  “The Dangers of Wireless Technology,”  “Cell/Transmission Towers and Your Health,” “Microwave Dangers and Your Health,” and so forth.

Havas has advanced her controversial views despite critics’ calls that they are “highly questionable” and “flawed.” Says the American Cancer Society: “Public exposure to radio waves from cell phone tower antennas is slight… The power levels are relatively low, the antennas are mounted high above ground level, and the signals are transmitted intermittently, rather than constantly.”

Cell phones are an essential service. They connect workers to job sites; seniors to social, medical and family networks; and first responders to emergencies. The Parksville Qualicum Beach area needs a cell tower on the existing Telus site. Without it, our cell service will remain unreliable at best, and zero, at worst.

In a unanimous decision less than two weeks ago, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that cities may not block the erection of cell towers on municipal land.

It is disappointing and shocking that the Regional District of Nanaimo has denied the activation of a Telus cell phone tower. The RDN’s decision is irresponsible — and may just be illegal.

Nicole PartonQualicum Beach