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EMF Studies

02 July 2017

Scotland: Parents Fear Children Will be Exposed to Cancer-Linked Radiation After New School Built Next to High Voltage Pylons

The power line is right beside the school.
(Photo Daily Record)

Parents fear children will be exposed to cancer-linked radiation after new school built next to high voltage pylons
by Graeme Donohoe, dailyrecord.co.uk, 2 July 2017

The power line is approximately 52ft from the ­building, while a ­second 132,000- volt cable is just over 196ft away.

A new £25million school is being built next to ­high-voltage pylons – sparking safety fears 
from parents and staff.

Our Lady and St Patricks High (OLSP) have been controversially moved to a new site in Dumbarton.

A 33,000-volt power line is approximately 52ft from the ­building, while a ­second 132,000- volt cable is just over 196ft away.

Parents and teachers are now calling for the power lines to be rerouted or put underground amid concerns they are a cancer hazard.

A 2007 report by Government advisory body Stakeholder ­Advisory Group on Extremely Low ­Frequency Electric and Magnetic Fields (SAGE) found there was ­evidence living near ­electricity lines could be linked to childhood leukaemia.

They urged the leaders to ban new buildings within 196ft of ­overhead cables.

Campaigners against moving OLSP to the Bellmyre site accuse West Dunbartonshire Council of ignoring their concerns when ­planning permission was ­rubber-stamped in 2014.

Worried parents Andrew and Clair Muir have considered ­pulling their daughter Katherine, 14, out of the school.

Actuary Andrew, 58, said: “It’s really worrying. These pylons are too close to the school and this has been flagged up as a leukaemia risk.

“Power cables should be nowhere near children. It’s just not safe to expose them to high-voltage lines.

“The kids should be monitored for radiation and the voltage on these power lines should be ­continually checked.”

An objection against the OLSP move was lodged by 75 teachers.

General ­secretary of the Scottish ­Secondary Teachers’ Association Seamus Searson said: ­“Serious­ 
concerns have been raised around pylons so I’m ­surprised they’ve ­continued to go down that route.

“The power lines should 
have been put ­underground. From our ­members’ point of view, it may well be that they decide they don’t want to work there.”

Despite power line emissions being linked to leukaemia, breast and brain cancer and dementia, a World Health ­Organisation report casts doubt on the claims.

They said there was not enough evidence to prove extremely 
low frequency (ELF) and electric ­and magnetic fields (EMF) ­transmissions generated by pylons were dangerous.

The school is expected to open in October. An assessment by the council to test ELF radiation and EMF ­transmissions in 2014 declared the emissions safe.

SAGE guidelines recommend keeping emissions below 400n/T. The maximum found was 190n/T.

The survey said: “The ­proposed property location is ­considered as excellently placed with limited magnetic penetration and, on that basis, we see no reason for further concern.”

West Dunbartonshire Council said: “The site boundary is more than 196ft from the main power lines – twice the minimum ­recommended distance – and the building is 52ft from minor power lines, which fully complies with all agreed standards.”


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