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18-06-2012, 21:54   #1
babystrawberry
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Health problems associated with living beside elecctric pylons???

Hi,
Not sure if i am posting in the right section, mods can you move this if so?, thanks

Is there any sound concrete evidence that living very close to large pylons for electricity causes long term health problems?
There is a lovely property I have had my eye on for a while and the only thing holding me bcak about it is that there are heavy duty electric pylons in the field across the road and the wires pass over the end of the garden.

I have googled it and there is contradicting research showing that they are the cause of cancers and other research showing that they do not cause any health problems.
Just wondering does anyone have any idea about this at all, is it dangerous to your health to live so close to these?
Thanks
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19-06-2012, 20:21   #2
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I think the primary reason for buying/not buying near pylons is the value of the property. And high-tension lines can have quite the hum off them in wet weather (used to annoy me where I lived growing up when I had to pass under some to visit my friend).

I'm not aware of any genuine link between pylons and cancers. I'd be more concerned about the likelyhood of children trying to climb onto the pylon or fly kites in the area.
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20-06-2012, 20:54   #3
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Value of property
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24-06-2012, 22:35   #4
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I agree with Tree but I also believe that there is a possibility of cancer risks in these areas. The value of the property is a big issue (no shocker there) but, to be honest, there hasn't been extensive research done on this topic and, as you said yourself, it's contradicting.

Even though I said that there's a possibility of cancer beside a pylon, it could be the exact same risk you'd take living beside a river of getting cancer or living in town. I, personally wouldn't let it deter you if the price is right for the house!

Ultimately the decision is yours and I'd take into account what Tree pointed out.
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25-06-2012, 01:34   #5
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Even though I said that there's a possibility of cancer beside a pylon, it could be the exact same risk you'd take living beside a river of getting cancer or living in town. I, personally wouldn't let it deter you if the price is right for the house!
The only link to cancer is a statistical blip in a survey. In other words they can't be sure there is a link or if it's just coincidence.

Make no mistake getting too close to a fallen cable will be fatal. But at a safe distance they are safe.

Here in Ireland we've had 100 years of high voltage. Marconi was using six foot sparks to transmit messages across the Atlantic, using so much power he bought a bog , which had a train and hundreds of bog cutters just to keep it going.

Any known mechanism where pylons could affect heath can be ruled out because the electrical fields are far lower than the ones you are exposed to all the time inside your house. And power station workers would be riddled by now.

The electric field off a CRT , the old TV's that were in every house would be much worse and at a much higher frequency.

If you've ever been near a plyon in the rain or mist you'll hear arcing (not as bad as ionisers or laser printers though) that gives a sense of the power in the cables.



Having a pylon nearby may actually reduce the risk of getting hit by lightening as they are well protected.
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27-06-2012, 19:36   #6
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Try new technology now... see if it killed or damaged people later (after a lot of financial muscle has been built up in the way of deconstructing it).
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27-06-2012, 19:51   #7
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Try new technology now... see if it killed or damaged people later (after a lot of financial muscle has been built up in the way of deconstructing it).
That's a little unfair- these days it's pretty hard to put new technology out into the field without good safety data. The fear of litigation alone tends to keep public safety a high priority for corporations. Not exactly a noble motive, but certainly a powerful one. It's also not particularly easy to use financial muscle to block scientific evidence. The smoking lobby failed spectacularly despite incredible financial support and whilst the oil lobby are still winning hearts among the public, they lost the battle within the scientific community over 20 years ago.
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27-06-2012, 21:19   #8
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Try new technology now... see if it killed or damaged people later (after a lot of financial muscle has been built up in the way of deconstructing it).
Fine if you can propose a mechanism for harm, or statistically evidence of harm.

Otherwise it's just BANANA's


The US has an over abundance of lawyers and things like class action - where they lawyer get paid and the public get discount vouchers - such that new technologies with potential dangers like driverless cars have been shelved since the 1960's.

Yes Google have a car, but the last time I checked they weren't planning on selling millions of them into general circulation.



Also most adults on the planet have a mobile phone. So the numbers of people exposed is in the billions and still no convincing evidence of phones harming people, but lots of calls to emergency services and Samaritans that have most definitely saved lives.

like I said earlier we've had many years of data of exposure to high voltage like the Marconi operators, the radio antennas on the old ships were high voltage transmission lines. Not to mention the number of people saved on the Titanic because they were able to send an SOS.
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27-06-2012, 22:46   #9
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That's a little unfair- these days it's pretty hard to put new technology out into the field without good safety data. The fear of litigation alone tends to keep public safety a high priority for corporations. Not exactly a noble motive, but certainly a powerful one. It's also not particularly easy to use financial muscle to block scientific evidence. The smoking lobby failed spectacularly despite incredible financial support and whilst the oil lobby are still winning hearts among the public, they lost the battle within the scientific community over 20 years ago.
I disagree with you to an extraordinary level. Pharmaceuticals in particular seem to run on a threadmill of a drug being the new "next generation" wonderdrug, to being something with side effects, to being taken off the market as being too dangerous.

The fear of litigation is the only thing that prompts any margins of safety at all, because without that you'd have companies starting up and then finishing when the side effects come out.

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Fine if you can propose a mechanism for harm, or statistically evidence of harm.

Otherwise it's just BANANA's
It is not bananas. They had no "mechanism" for showing radiation was bad back when it was discovered, but it wouldn't have been "bananas" for them to avoid the X-Rays. Many things are known to just be "bad" and damaging to humans without having precise models for their mechanisms and without tons of people already dying.
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27-06-2012, 23:58   #10
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Many things are known to just be "bad" and damaging to humans without having precise models for their mechanisms and without tons of people already dying.
lets not forget back in those days if you were poor you could starve to death in hard times. And many of the pioneers suffered too.


BUT the actual panic over X-rays wasn't the danger it was over something else, x-ray proof underwear.

Thanks to TSA people are selling x-ray proof underwear again


Today we have a far better understanding of the mechanisms that can cause cellular damage and use statistics to detect unknown influences.




Can you propose a mechanism where overhead power lines can affect people in a way that the ones in the house can't ?
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28-06-2012, 01:59   #11
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Today we have a far better understanding of the mechanisms that can cause cellular damage and use statistics to detect unknown influences.
Yeah, and this is good. But we should still be on the lookout for perils in new technology that we may be in no way evolved or equipped to deal with.

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Can you propose a mechanism where overhead power lines can affect people in a way that the ones in the house can't ?
The power supply in the home is only at 230V and only carries the amount of power you are tapping off of the power grid for your appliances. On the other hand the main powerlines operate at many thousands of volts and carry huge amounts of power, enough to supply entire towns and cities. So the surrounding electromagnetic fields the powerlines create are huge by comparison to the ones created in the home. There is really no comparison or contest between the two.

To compensate for this the large powerlines are much more insulated, and there are warning signs to keep away from them at their base. You are very close to the power-supply cords in the home all day every day, they can be right next to your foot and this is perfectly acceptable. On the other hand there is a relatively big distance between you and the ones in the street, large walls between you and them, etc.

The distance and insulation between you and them makes a huge difference, the electromagnetic field power falls off by about d^4, where d is the distance between you and the source of the field. This is why mobile phones, which create very small fields, are postulated as being harmful (because of how close you put them to your head). Personally I think there are vastly worse things that are doing a lot more damage to humans than mobile phones.

Last edited by SuperInfinity; 28-06-2012 at 02:01.
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28-06-2012, 13:26   #12
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Yeah, and this is good. But we should still be on the lookout for perils in new technology that we may be in no way evolved or equipped to deal with.
Statistics are used to track down harm being caused by unknown agents.

And as yet despite millions of people living and working in the presence of power lines nothing definite has appeared that isn't covered by the health and safety provisions we already have.


Quote:
The power supply in the home is only at 230V and only carries the amount of power you are tapping off of the power grid for your appliances. On the other hand the main powerlines operate at many thousands of volts and carry huge amounts of power, enough to supply entire towns and cities. So the surrounding electromagnetic fields the powerlines create are huge by comparison to the ones created in the home. There is really no comparison or contest between the two.
Yes there is no comparison between the two at the same distance. But in the home you are frequently millimetres away from the conductors so field intensites are vastly greater than you could experience from standing under an overhead line.

It's like complaining about mobile phone masts up on a roof while in the habit of holding a phone up to you brain or keeping in a pocket beside your genitals.


Electrical field intensity is simply voltage divided by distance.

The electrical field you are exposed to by brushing against the screen of a CRT (36KV of an old colour ) TV is far stronger than standing below a 220KV power line.

Magnet field off a power line is again is far lower than you'd get from a hair dryer or cooker.


Quote:
To compensate for this the large powerlines are much more insulated, and there are warning signs to keep away from them at their base.
Overhead powerlines are NOT insulated, if one falls to the ground , don't go anywhere near it

Quote:
You are very close to the power-supply cords in the home all day every day, they can be right next to your foot and this is perfectly acceptable. On the other hand there is a relatively big distance between you and the ones in the street, large walls between you and them, etc.

The distance and insulation between you and them makes a huge difference, the electromagnetic field power falls off by about d^4, where d is the distance between you and the source of the field. This is why mobile phones, which create very small fields, are postulated as being harmful (because of how close you put them to your head). Personally I think there are vastly worse things that are doing a lot more damage to humans than mobile phones.
like you say , comparable separation distances from overhead lines are well in excess of those for domestic installations.


There is one effect that is more likely at the voltages used by overhead power lines, arcing. But even that is more likely during bad weather, and the effects are infinitesimal compared to lightening. It's like comparing dioxins from state of the art incinerators with bonfire night. And besides laser printers and old CRT's are worse.
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29-06-2012, 00:01   #13
AtomicHorror
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I disagree with you to an extraordinary level. Pharmaceuticals in particular seem to run on a threadmill of a drug being the new "next generation" wonderdrug, to being something with side effects, to being taken off the market as being too dangerous.
That's a pretty woolly statement- would you care to give us some specifics? If a new pharmaceutical doesn't perform better than the standard of care during trials, it usually doesn't make it to market- again not for very noble reasons but because the regulators won't grant marketing authorization (in borderline cases the regulators are arguably open to lobbying efforts and this is certainly an issue in the States). Inevitably not all possible adverse reactions can be detected in trials (if a reaction happens in 1 in 100,000 patients and your trial has only 10,000 participants for example), so of course new reactions will be discovered in the post marketing data. Every pharmaceutical has side effects, because all human biochemical functions are connected to others. The important question is whether the benefit (effectiveness) is worth the cost (in terms of adverse reactions).

Pharma companies are required to do post-marketing safety surveillance. Naturally they accept far worse adverse reactions from chemotherapy medications than they do for hay fever tablets. They're also required to report all of their data to the regulators who do their own analysis. If the cost-benefit ratio is bad, the drug is withdrawn from the market. At that point the mainstream media acts as if this is a scandal.

The talk of "wonderdrugs" is a marketing spin which companies use to try and boost prescription rates. There's a touch of desperation to it these days primarily because of the enormous cost of safety/efficacy testing. Usually about $2 billion per product.

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The fear of litigation is the only thing that prompts any margins of safety at all, because without that you'd have companies starting up and then finishing when the side effects come out.
I'm sure it's a consideration, but the regulators typically have a much greater capacity to hurt pharma companies than settlement costs do. Pharma companies have turnovers in the tens of billions, so paying damages and fines isn't a show stopper for them. But the regulators can force companies to close offices and halt trading in their territories. They will also band together with regulators in other territories, particularly in the EU.

Pharma companies are evil, but their safety record is getting better all the time (mostly due to external influences).
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29-06-2012, 00:03   #14
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Yeah, and this is good. But we should still be on the lookout for perils in new technology that we may be in no way evolved or equipped to deal with.
Yeah we really should.
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07-07-2012, 11:21   #15
chazzywhazz
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Im in to h&s in respect to radiation if your in doubt dong go there.a property near a pylon will be hard to resell if you do not like living there. Plus will it constantly play on youd mind?
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