The smart-grid health risk?

The smart-grid health risk?

Lawsuit claims utilities negligent, deceitful about smart meters

By Shane Cohn 07/25/2013

Headaches, heart attacks, cancer, loss of sleep?

A lawsuit has been filed against SC Edison and PG&E, alleging that smart meters are causing neurological harm and other adverse health effects.

A total of 16 plaintiffs, spanning from Santa Barbara County to Orange County, have joined the suit, filed by attorneys David Kyle and Paul Overett, that claims the utilities withheld important safety information associated with the use of the newly installed smart meters and the radio frequency radiation they emit.

The utilities are being charged with negligence, fraud and deceit, product liability and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Also named in the suit are smart-meter manufacturers and installation companies.

“The goal of this suit is to raise awareness about health effects from wireless devices and the infrastructure,” said Liz Barris, lead plaintiff in the suit. Barris said she, like many others, is electrosensitive and has bouts of nausea and headaches when exposed to certain wireless devices and wi-fi, smart meters included.

More than a year ago, SCE began installing smart meters as part of a nationwide plan by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop a smart grid. Efficiency in electricity transmission was the primary reasons for the DOE wanting to upgrade the electrical grid, and SCE officials said customers would be better informed about their specific energy use, resulting in the ability to use less energy, especially during peak hours. Smart meters work by using radio frequency radiation to communicate energy usage information to the power company.

For seven months, Barris slept in her car while she fought with Edison about getting the meter removed from her apartment. Attempts to sleep in her apartment led to her experiencing severe heart arrhythmia, which she believes is directly linked to smart-meter radiation. She said Edison offered to replace the smart meter with an analog meter, but for the price of $4,000 a year. Smart meter skeptics like Barris have also suggested that the data collection process of the meters is an invasion of privacy, tracking things like home occupation and security system presence.

Edison did not respond for comment by deadline.

The lawsuit cites several peer-reviewed medical studies about smart-meter health hazards, as well as findings from the American Academy of Environmental Medicine, which called for “immediate caution regarding smart-meter installation due to potentially harmful RF (radio frequency) exposure.”

“From these peer review studies I’ve read, it’s clear that the electrical signals the meters put out every minute are damaging to neurological tissue,” said Dr. Robin Bernhoft, a medical toxicologist in Ojai. “It’s not the thing you want in your house or neighborhood.”

The Electric Power Research Institute, however, concluded that the radio-frequency exposure levels from wireless smart meters are substantially below the protective limits set by the Federal Communications Commission for the general public’s safety.

John Puccetti, a Ventura resident and electrician, said Edison customers should be concerned about this technology. “There is documented evidence that we should at least proceed with caution,” he said, “and there is no caution at all. My hope is, the California Public Utilities Commission pays attention to the number of complaints that have been made.”

Barris said the lawsuit is still accepting more plaintiffs who feel their health has been affected by the smart meters, or smart grid.  For more information, contact


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This is utter nonsense, completely lacking of any scientific underpinnings. I challenge any of you electrosensitive folks to a contest. Lets go out somewhere in a field where we all agreee you are not being affected by the EMF. Then, we turn on and off the wireless at random and you can tell us whether or not you can sense it. I will give you $1,000 if you can. The challenge is open to anyone. No tinfoil hat required although it helps.

posted by wesadams on 7/25/13 @ 02:25 p.m.

We don't need any comments from holier than thou commenters. Is Wes in any pain? No!

People like Wes give humanity a bad name. They probably work for PiGGE or SC Edison

posted by Inside Nine on 7/25/13 @ 08:00 p.m.

I have studied the behavior of these utilities for some time.

1. They have "No Proof of Human Safety" or any long term peer reviewed published studies of subjecting Smart Meters upon humans in real everyday living arrangements. Therefore they are experimenting on people.

2. They did not give "Full Factual Disclosure" about the true nature or capability of the so-called Smart Meter to the subjected customers. Therefore they are concealing vital health & safety information from people.

3. They did not get fully informed, express written consent from the subjects in this experiment and are therefore conscripting customers to be Lab Rats against their will.

4. They do not have any scientists overseeing the health and safety of the subjects in this experiment that can call it off if biological markers in the subjects point to damage.

5. They did not allow the subjects to step out of the experiment unless power was cut off.

6. For all of this many of the utilities got taxpayer grants which seems like paying for the bullet at your own execution.

7. Only after much injury and outcry by the people did the CPUC order the utilities to offer an opt out so that a monied customer can pay extortion to be free from the Smart Meter on his house but still be radiated by all of the other Smart Meters up and down the street.

8. Sadly we have a man in the White House that is still us that Smart Meters are green and good and that they are for the betterment of society.

? What are you going to do to protect yourself and your family from this menacing technology and the Darth Vaders of the world that perpetrate it upon you?

Are you going to stand up and fight or lay down and be radiated like a hotdog in a microwave oven? Do not take to long to ponder this or you will not have enough brain cells left think straight.

posted by Hans Shifterfoot on 7/25/13 @ 09:12 p.m.

In 100% agreement with Wes. There is zero evidence to show that non-ionizing radiation such as the minuscule amount generated by smart meters constitutes a health risk. What consumers believe is irrelevant. They are not physicists and do not understand the properties of EMF. Here's what a real physicist who does has to say:


It can be safely argued that the biggest threat to life on this planet is ignorance, followed perhaps by global warming. The lights over most of the Northeastern United States and parts of Canada began to flicker at 4:11 pm on Thursday, August 14, 2003. It was the start of the most extensive electrical blackout in history, covering the entire Northeast and parts of Canada, yet no one understood how it happened. Five electric power companies that shared a common grid pointed fingers at one another. The purpose of the grid is clear: electric power cannot be stored. Power companies must generate the exact amount of power that is being used, adjusting to every electrical switch that is thrown. Linking power companies in a grid should mean a statistically smoother demand, thus reducing local blackouts. But the grid has grown so complex no one understood it. The Recovery and Reinvestment Act called for a smarter electric grid that could accurately anticipate demand. This would start with the use of smart power meters. For most of you, the meter reader hacking his way through your shrubs to get at the power meter has been replaced by a Wi-Fi that can update consumption at frequent intervals. Accurate data on power consumption patterns would benefit both the power company and the consumer. As WN has repeatedly observed, the energy of microwave photons is about 1 million times too low to cause ionization. No ionization, no cancer. If the laws of physics don't work for you, I should point out that the radiation emitted by a smart meter adds up to about one Watt when it's transmitting, which it usually is not; that's less than a cell phone. Moreover, people don't usually hold their power meter against the side of their head for hours. However, if you choose to crouch down behind the rhododendrons and hug your power meter all day long you will still suffer no ill effects from microwaves. That's the great thing about being a mammal; we maintain a constant temperature winter and summer. But even if you're a frog, I don't think 1 W would be a problem. However, if you're an Indian frog it might be another matter.

The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.
--- Bertrand Russell

posted by acerbas on 7/26/13 @ 09:46 a.m.

Guess you physics guys need to get professorial to feel OK about your disregard for human suffering. I am concerned about the obvious "Conspiracy of Cruelty" in this country where people pull out "facts" so they can idly stand by and watch people suffer.

Maybe its fortunate most people are ignorant of the suffering of the estimated 5% of humans who feel constant effects from EMFs produced by devices like smart meters. The sounds of wailing provide little comfort to the planet.


posted by Inside Nine on 7/26/13 @ 10:50 a.m.

"Blindness in part" has been a documented human characteristic since Biblical times. Amazingly utilities and meter manufactures see only Dollars and seldom any humanity in delivery of electricity.

This 3 min. video of a Smart Meter victim elicited only scorn and ridicule from her utility in Sacramento Ca. She was told to "No more bloody rags" after she put her blood nightgown on the overhead projector.

Checkout the "Smart Meter Health Complaints" and videos on this link:

When are we going to see some precaution utilities? There is plenty of evidence for personal injury already or lawyers would not be involved.

posted by Eric Windheim on 7/26/13 @ 11:39 a.m.

Hey Eric W,

Where can I see more videos of people testifying at that utility board meeting with the BLoody Nightgown?
Got any links?

Where is this and what utility could be so cold & cruel?

posted by Hans Shifterfoot on 7/26/13 @ 01:09 p.m.

This is an EXCELLENT article!!! I hope people email the woman listed and join the lawsuit if you are experiencing health effects from yours or your neighbors smart meters or smart grid. This program needs to be DISMANTLED!!! Thank you to the reporter for writing it!!! There is a MASSIVE cover up of the health effects from these meters and other RF sources. People desperately need to know before they find out the hard way...through their WON health effects which are almost impossible to reverse.

posted by SmartMetersKill on 7/26/13 @ 02:01 p.m.

The utility is Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD).

You can see all of the Board Meeting videos here back to 6/6/12 when we first started speaking about the deception and concealment that had been used to get the Smart Meter onto SMUD Customer Owners homes.

You can see all of the "Board Meeting" videos here:

Speakers usually start at 20 minute plus.

I suggest viewing the latest and then going back in history one "Board Meeting" at a time.

Pass this around if you can. People need to know what is going on.

posted by Eric Windheim on 7/26/13 @ 02:07 p.m.

Since Edison installed the smart meter I've been experiencing fewer stomach aches and headaches than I usually have.

However I do have an obsessive desire to hug my smart meter all the time. Do I have a cause of action in tort?

posted by cassandra2 on 7/28/13 @ 02:50 p.m.

Yes you do have a cause of action of tort. Since you are experiencing fewer stomach aches and headaches it is probably because your bills are being paid in some way in relation to smart meters, as these are the only people who ever comment in favor of them, those who make their living in some way from that industry. So go ahead and hug the smart meter, sleep with it near to your head if you can, in fact, if you can get a bunch of them like from a bank of meters on a wall, you should hug this was with the meters and sleep with your head near it for as long as you possibly can, say even months if that is possible and if anyone was stupid enough to have ever married you, you should have your wife with you sleeping there. Once you have done this, both you and your wife will be eligible to join our lawsuit as you will have done irreversible and undeniable damage to not just your brain, but your entire lineage and your children may be born with defects that will be transmitted for ever and ever. Sound like a lawsuit to me!! Let us know once you have done this and then get in touch with the people for the lawsuit.

posted by SmartMetersKill on 7/28/13 @ 05:31 p.m.

Oh sorry Cassandra, you say you are a female...I somehow question that but let's just go with that for the moment. Just position yourself near your meter, like move your bed near it and keep it there for a few months. It may take some more or less time than others depending on prior radiation exposure, but eventually rest assured, you will be able to join the lawsuit, no problem!! Best of luck and keep us posted on your health effects!! :)

posted by SmartMetersKill on 7/28/13 @ 05:36 p.m.

Please read Acerbas comment.

The emission of one exposure is less than what is needed to cause ANY tissue damage to your body, and with repeated exposure of less than the amount needed to cause ANY damage, the effect is still nil.

Zero X 1 is zero; zero X infinity is still zero.

As for my supposed connection to Edison et al., it is limited to their supplying my electricity and me paying my bill every month.

There are real things to worry about out there. This is a wild distraction on a par with predictions about the Rapture arriving.

posted by cassandra2 on 7/29/13 @ 09:25 a.m.

Why is the industry wasting it's precious dollars on someone like you to post comments when clearly you do not know your a-- from your elbow on this. They need to hire someone a little smarter than you to compete with the total laymen who now have more of a background in the science than all of your co-workers put did they get this background you might ask? When something harms you, you become interested in it. So they read up on it...on ALL of the studies, not just the industry funded junk science. So please as soon as possible, go ahead and place your bed near a bank of smart meters and sleep there for a few months as clearly you need to get educated too. In the mean time, I suggest you lose your job as industry blogger because you are a poor excuse for a shill. And I never said you were connected to Edison, I said you were connected to the industry. And YES, the Rapture has arrived...for people like YOU!!! Your time has come!!! Your goose is cooked!! The zero you speak of is a reflection of yourself when you look in the mirror. May God have no mercy on your soul.

posted by SmartMetersKill on 7/29/13 @ 11:23 a.m.

Every time an article appears on the health damage from radio-frequency radiation, among the commenters there are inevitably several shills or trolls or perhaps simply willfully ignorant persons who ridicule the victims and cite the long-discredited notion that low levels of EMF cannot harm you because they are too weak to cause tissue heating or break molecular bonds, as if those were the only possible mechanisms of harm. In particular, Cassandra, you talk like an "expert." Can you name your sources?

I have a few sources at hand:
1) Extra-Low-Frequency Magnetic Fields alter Cancer Cells through Metabolic Restriction, by
Ying Li and Paul Héroux posted at
2) Plausible mechanism of action for low-intensity EMR exposure, by Martin Pall, Ph.D., posted at
3) Wireless Industry Patents acknowledging a cancer risk, at

And that's just cancer. The list could go on and on and on, because literally tens of thousands of studies have reported biological effects from low-level EMF. In science, anomalies appear in research that defy expectations. What an honest scientist does with them is investigate them to determine the causes; a dishonest one fudges the data for his pay master.

posted by PatriciaOrmsby on 7/29/13 @ 05:13 p.m.

I can name my sources. A dandy one is the physicist that Acerbas quotes.

(OMG i have graduated from a tool of the communist conspiracy to an industry shill with about as much evidence or logic. Is that a demotion or a promotion?)

By all means sue. And when it come to establishing causality or even provable damage to your person, you will be laughed out of court.

Do you have any links to reputable science journals among the links?

Tonality--yes, that literary term. The tone of the above comments bespeaks hysteria and "one step beyond"--some spooky music here. You are the kind of folks who in another age burned witches.

posted by cassandra2 on 7/29/13 @ 07:21 p.m.

From all reports this smart meter must be abolished. It is not only the important fact that they can cause health problems, but they are also devices used for spying in our home and then there is the fact this type of device insures them, the utility companies of higher rates and the safety feature leaves a lot to be desired for they cause fires and they also release the radiation throughout your community. Whatever we can do to stop these from being installed and then to obtain the permission to have those already installed removed. God Bless our America.

posted by suzdelia on 7/29/13 @ 08:21 p.m.

Yes, Cassandra, we will and ARE suing. And we won't be laughed out of court, but you will be laughed out of a job. Wish I knew exactly who you are so I could put your picture up on my FB wall and count the days til the industry runs out of money to pay lairs like you to post BS that only you benefit from as your pockets are lined and others suffer because of your greed.

posted by SmartMetersKill on 7/30/13 @ 08:37 a.m.

The real key to understanding the health aspects and why you SHOULD be concerned is understanding the FCC "safety guidelines" and its history.

First, please understand that the FCC, who knows diddly squat about human biology, was put in charge of RF safety guidelines. Feel comfortable?

The FCC has not updated its guidelines since 1996 and that update was based on science available pre-1986. Remember 1986 - most people did not even have a computer let alone a mobile phone.
The world has rapidly changed, no?

Anyway, the FCC relies on the EPA and FDA to help determine its "safety" guidelines. One would think that annually they would send out an attestation letter to these groups to get their assertions that no changes are needed to the limits in place. And that maybe every 5-7 years a formal process of study is conducted to review the limits based on the current research. Nope. Nothing has been done. After 17 years they are now doing a procedure. Why? Because the GAO audited them last year and issued a report chastising them for not reviewing their guidelines. Feel more comfortable?

With the proliferation of wireless at an exponential rate one would think they would be more diligent.

There are thousands of studies showing biological harm far below the FCC current limits. The FCC guidelines ONLY protect you from thermal effects, not biological effects.

Check out the 2002 response letter that the EPA sent to Jane Newton where they state that the belief that these limits protect from all harm is not justified. Check out last years victory in an Italian Supreme Court where a worker won a case against his employer - he got brain cancer. Check out the many warnings overseas from other countries regarding wireless - especially for children and pregnant women and finally please note that the American Association of Pediatrics issued a letter in Dec 2012 in support of the Cell Phone Right to Know Bill expressing concern that children's brains may absorb more RF radiation than adults and far deeper into their brains because their skulls are thinner. Than ask your utility to provide you with the RF guidelines for children versus adults. They don't have them, why?

Smart meters alone don't do diddly squat to save energy or give you info to save energy. It is a farce. You will need a Home Energy Controller and smart appliances and Dynamic Pricing. This is going to cost you a fortune in the long run. Your utility may put a nickel savings in your right pocket but your new home energy services company will take 15 cents out of your left pocket. Don't be fooled, stop drinking the water and ask some questions. Resist!

posted by MM on 7/30/13 @ 09:47 p.m.

Smart meters are INDEED DEADLY! My health has been severely compromised by the smart meters on my property, which I was forced to tolerate for two years while I helped fight for an opt-out. To find out what the physicians and scientists are saying, go to and choose Public Health Alert - Smart Meters. I am the author of more than 35 articles against smart meters on the Patch news media. I encourage you to get the smart meters off your home while you can still enjoy health for yourself and your family. I encourage you to join a lawsuit if you've been injured, that is the only language the utilities speak. No amount of talk, reasoning, begging, or other means have changed what they are doing one iota. It is all about money for them. Your members of Congress also need to be called. There is a current bill H.R. 2685 that will mandate smart meters nationwide.

If you’d rather not see this bill passed, make the call today.

The bill will go first to the Energy and Commerce committee which includes Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Henry Waxman (D-CA). What you can do:

1) Contact bill authors Jerry McNerney (209) 476-8552 and Matt Cartwright 202-225-5546 and encourage them to KILL the BILL. (what are they thinking?)

2) Contact your congressional representative, and urge them to oppose HR 2685. Find them here. Tell them why.

Please spread the word to your networks, and encourage swift and widespread action to stop this bill. The smart grid is already a public health and safety disaster- let’s not make it worse.

posted by No2SmartMeters on 8/04/13 @ 12:48 p.m.
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