Wireless signals are bouncing around us all day and all night — from mobile phones, Internet services and now in Santa Monica, Calif., new city parking meters. One woman who apparently is known for submitting detailed reports during public comment periods with the City Council claims all those wireless signals emitted from newfangled parking meters are making her ill — and she wants $1.7 billion for her health problems because of it. Plus another $1.7 million every month after that.
The Santa Monica Daily Press says she admits that it’s kind of a big sum.
“I know it seems a little big,” she said, “but they can’t do things that affect people’s health without their consent. I think that’s wrong.”
In her claim against City Hall, she says that radiation from the wireless signals is causing her ears to ring, giving her ear infections and a tightness on her neck. This all started happening in April, she says after the meters started popping up. She’s worried that the radiation might cause cancer.
So far, she’s the cheese standing alone in her complaints against the meters, said the city’s assistant finance director.
“The Wi-Fi is very low level and only communicates between the meter and the sensor, about 5 to 8 feet,” he wrote. It’s also not like the meters are constantly sending out wireless signals — they only activate when a person pays the meter or when cars pull up or away, he said.
“It’s the same as someone using a cell phone walking on the sidewalk,” he wrote. “The meters comply with all necessary regulations related to wireless communication.”
City Hall says the new technology makes it easier to park and find spots.
Despite the city’s insistence that the woman seeking billions is the only one to complain, at least formally, others in the community are worried about all the cell phone towers around the city, as well as meters that track energy in residences in real time used by Southern California Edison. A group of citizens are suing the company over the $$75 fee they have to pay to opt out of such wireless meters.
“They’re trying to charge people to not give them cancer and invade their homes,” said one of the group’s members.
Resident files $1.7B claim with City Hall [Santa Monica Daily Press]