Are Cell Phones Safe? New Website & Research Provides The Answer
Even though the radio frequency (RF) radiation levels in cell phones are regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and generally considered to be safe when used properly, there is still plenty of research that shows cell phone use could cause cancer, disrupt pacemakers, decrease fertility, damage DNA, and increase the risk of traffic accidents.
The FCC and other government agencies claim the majority of scientific studies show there are no adverse health effects from cell phone use. That's not to say there aren't other studies that point out the dangers of cell phones, particularly those that occur while using a cell phone and driving at the same time.
With its http://cellphones.procon.org/ website, ProdCon.org hopes to provide information to readers to help them think critically, educate themselves, and make informed decisions regarding cell phone use.
A few interesting tidbits from the site:
- Cordless home phones, television, radio, laptops, and palm held computers all produce radiofrequency (RF) radiation, the same type of radiation that is produced by cell phones.
- The radiation emitted by a cell phone can penetrate 4 - 6 cm (1.6 - 2.4 in) into the human brain. The amount of RF absorbed into the head can be reduced by using a wired ear-piece (not a Bluetooth unit) rather than placing the phone against the ear.
- A 2002 report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (released in 2009 under a Freedom of Information Act request) concluded that using a hands free device (Bluetooth, headset, etc.) does not reduce distraction or make cell phone use safer while driving. As of Sep. 2009, six states had passed laws requiring the use of a hands free device while driving.
- On July 24, 2008, a warning was issued by the Director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute to faculty and staff to decrease cell phone exposure due to a possible connection between cell phone radiation and brain tumors. The warning prompted a congressional hearing on cell phone use and tumors.