3G masts 'cause health problems'

Phone masts for the high-tech third generation mobile phones cause headaches and nausea, researchers have claimed.

Dutch government scientists looked at the signals transmitted by base stations for the new phones. They operate at a higher frequency than those for traditional mobiles. But mobile phone manufacturers and radiation experts said more research was needed before it could be concluded that the phone masts damaged health. The first third generation mobile phone network opened in the UK in March this year. The technology allows callers to see each other and send video footage via their phone. Campaigners have expressed concerns that radiation from mobile phones could be linked to conditions ranging from cancer to blood clots in the brain.

'Significant'

The Dutch study exposed volunteers in laboratories to radiation from 3G and "traditional" masts - without telling them which version they were being exposed to. Seventy-two people took part in the study, half of whom had complained about the health effects of living near traditional mobile masts. The survey found both those who had complained about mobile phones radiation - and even those who had not - complained about significant levels of nausea, headaches and tingling sensations when they were exposed to signals that mimicked third generation mobile networks. A spokesman for the Dutch Economics Ministry, said: "If the test group was exposed to third generation base station signals, there was a significant impact. "They felt tingling sensations, got headaches and felt nauseous." In contrast, exposure to radiation from standard masts showed no significant effect. Maarten Lortzer, a spokesman for the Dutch research organisation TNO, which carried out the research on behalf of the government, told BBC News Online: "These findings were very unexpected.

News source: BBC News

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