Jayson Orton, Lakeside, Cape Town

I bought a house in Lakeside not knowing that the nearby fire station had a set of 7 transponders.  At that time, I had no idea that electromagnetic radiation had any health impact. Around four months after moving in, I began experiencing strange symptoms which baffled both me and my doctor. He gave me sleeping tablets, which did not help. Gradually other symptoms came along like dry eyes, itchy ears, ringing in the ears, urinary urgency and eventually depression. Six in total that I know of. Halfway through the illness, another tower was proposed, and community objectors listed the health impacts. I did not bother to object because I really did not care. We all need our cell phones, right? A month or two later, my wife decided to find out what these so-called health impacts were – and oh boy, did a large penny drop! It all suddenly made sense. I also now realised that my sleeping well on business but terribly at home was not a coincidence. After a further four months of fighting to stay in our house by sleeping in different rooms (and spending R17 000 on a protective screen that had little effect), we conceded that we had to abandon house. And so we did.  We are now forced to rent. We cannot afford to sell and buy again because of the associated costs, and we are too scared to buy because a new tower could just pop up next door without warning. At least by renting we can escape if we need to.

My GP examined me twice, the first time when I could not sleep and again the day before we moved out of our house and I was at my worst.  In both cases, I had no underlying conditions.

Recently I was on business in Plettenberg bay; I did not know that my guest house was between two cell towers (440m and 490m away respectively). On the fourth night, I experienced what I call ‘microwave waking’ (going from deep sleep to instantly awake and alert). All six nights in Plett were like this. Then I went to Pofadder, where there was a mast 260 metres away, but very tall. That is when I realised that height matters … low towers are worse. And constant exposure (I was working from home and got it 24/7) is what makes you ill.

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