September 14, 2007

Victim of electrical pollution
Bright-area resident suffers health problems from electromagnetic radiation

Thursday September 13, 2007

WOODSTOCK - It started out with a ringing in his ears.
Soon after he moved into his Bright-area farmhouse in October 2003, Martin Weatherall began experiencing nausea, difficulty thinking, headaches and ongoing sleep disruptions.
Today, Weatherall, 56, believes he suffers from the effects of electrical pollution, or electro hypersensitivity, developed after years of exposure to electromagnetic radiation.
On Thursday, Weatherall will address Norfolk County on behalf of Simcoe resident Dan Currie who is pleading with council to take the necessary steps to remove a Rogers cellphone antenna from a nearby water tower that he believes is adversely affecting his health.
Currie has had to move from his home because of the impact of the antenna on his health.
Currie’s ordeal has been documented this week in a CBC Television three-day news series that began airing Monday.
In April, council received a letter signed by 11 Simcoe-area doctors who said it is not wise to situate sources of electromagnetic waves near schools, residential neighbourhoods and hospitals.
"Scientific research shows (that electromagnetic waves) damage cells, DNA and change blood composition," Weatherall said.
Born in England in 1951, as a young adult Weatherall joined the British Navy where he was exposed to large amounts of "radiation in one form or another."
"The combination caused me to be electro sensitive," he said.

After working briefly as a newspaper photographer, he joined the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force where he worked as a police officer, forensic identification officer and a director of the Toronto Police Association.
After retiring and settling into his new home in Oxford County, he started to get sick.
When he investigated he found so much electrical pollution it led him to install a tingle voltage filter to mitigate the situation.
"It cut it down by quite a bit," he said. "But what we found was that most ground current was coming through the telephone system."
Bell Canada sent in a specialist from Peterborough to install filters and change the grounding.
A specialist from Wisconsin also found excessive electricity "identified as coming from the Hydro One system," he said.
"This electricity is filled with high frequencies which cause health problems," Weatherall said.
Eventually he would rid his house of much of the pollution by removing ductwork in the attic that made the house "act like an antenna."
As Weatherall learned more about the electrical pollution, he started an organization called WEEP Canada (Wireless Electrical and Electromagnetic Pollution) with two other people, designed to raise awareness about the issue.
Weatherall says Woodstock is a hotbed of electro magnetic radiation from many sources including two Rogers antenna located within the city.
House wiring, electrical appliances, the electrical distribution system, transformers, cordless phones, cellphones, microwave transmission facilities, WiFi and other wireless systems are items he also flags as possible electrical pollutants that can cause a number of ailments.
Dr. David Flowers, a professor at Trent University, is co-founder of WEEP Canada.
The current Canadian safety levels for electro magnetic radiation are far too lenient, he said.
"There are lot of current health issues from breast cancer to Parkinson’s disease to hyperactivity that are linked to EM pollution," he wrote in an e-mail. "Canada should be following Germany’s government, who last week told their citizens not to use wireless networks or cellphones."
In June the Ontario government, after being lobbied by farmers, took a first step in recognizing the issue by stating it is addressing concerns about stray voltage and its impact on livestock.
Energy Minister Dwight Duncan directed the Ontario Energy Board to implement measures to address the issue of stray voltage, particularly as it affects the agricultural sector.
Tina DeGeus, an information officer with the Radiation Safety Institute of Canada, said electro magnetic radiation differs from other radiations because it is non-ionizing.
"The possible health effects have not been established as they have been for ionizing radiation," she said. "Scientists are at odds over whether or not it is a health risk."

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Publisher: Pat Logan
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