Is it safe to live near a base station or locate base stations near schools or hospitals?

Base stations and EMF FAQ

Is it safe to live near a base station or locate base stations near schools or hospitals?

Yes. It is safe to live near a mobile phone base station as they operate at low power, produce low EMF exposure levels in public areas and are specifically designed for the environment they are located in.

The WHO notes that:

In built-up urban and residential areas, base station antennas are typically located above building rooftops or at a sufficient distance from nearby buildings. Low powered base stations are often located inside apartment and city buildings to provide dedicated mobile coverage.

Higher powered base stations are located in rural and country areas to provide extended coverage, and are usually mounted on taller structures or towers.

RF exposures from base stations typically range from 0.002% to 2% of the levels of international exposure guidelines, depending on a variety of factors such as the proximity to the antenna and the surrounding environment. This is lower or comparable to RF exposures from radio or television broadcast transmitters.

Base stations are designed and operated so that people are not exposed above the recommended limits set by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP). Measurements of EMF by regulatory authorities in many countries indicate that exposure levels in public areas are typically below the ICNIRP Guideline.

As a matter of fact, by increasing the number of base stations and locating them near where people use mobile phones actually reduces EMF levels. This is because the mobile phones only need to transmit over a short distance to the nearest base station using less power, and the network is also operating more efficiently only needing to communicate with nearby users.

So to minimise EMF requires base stations located close to users.

Many hospitals have base stations located on the rooftop and dedicated in-building mobile systems to provide the best coverage inside the hospital. The in-building system means that mobile phones inside the hospital also operate at the lowest possible power.