Before Toyota’s much vaunted reliability took the recent hits, we were about to buy a 2010 Prius. Since then, however, we’ve also become concerned by possible hazards associated with EMF in hybrid vehicles. As with cell phones, there is a dearth of scientific studies. Does anybody have any concrete information?
There exists zero evidence that even strong magnetic fields have any adverse effect on the human body. That’s why there is such a dirth of scientific studies.
If magnetic fields did have any adverse effects, the numerous MRI scans that I’ve had done would have me glowing in the dark. Or growing extra limbs.
Recognize too that gas vehicles probably have as much aggregate current running through their various circuits as hybrids and probably as much as electric vehicles, and it’s the flowing electrons that create the fields.
There is a dearth of scientific studies, but I don’t agree that there is zero evidence of EMF adverse effects. An Israeli study demonstrated links between cell phone usage and saliva gland cancers. Studies have show cell phone use breaking down the brain/blood barrier. A recent article on MSNBC described scientists’ calls for fewer medical procedures using radiation. If there are dangers associated with EMF, I think they are probably long term. Perhaps there are no ill effects from electric vehicles and EMF, but I would like to see the studies that demonstrate that.
As for conventional vehicles creating EMF, yes, I have read about them, but they seem to be more limited (during acceleration, for instance), than the ongoing effects of a hybrid or electric car.
“The World Health Organization, based upon the consensus view of the scientific and medical communities, has stated in the past that cancer is unlikely to be caused by cellular phones or their base stations and that reviews have found no convincing evidence for other health effects”
Read more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_phone_radiation_and_health
With respect, I believe the procedures that use radiation that they’re referring to are X-rays, CAT scans, and procedures using radioactive dyes injected into the arterial system. All agree that overexposure to these types of radiation can be harmful. I don’t believe they’re referring to EMF.
Yes, AFAIK, the only health dangers of an MRI are if you get smashed by a chair or oxygen tank that someone left too close to the machine.
I think you have more information than 99.9% of the rest of us. You shouldn’t buy a hybrid unless you are satisfied there is no risk of EMF. Since there is a risk and no good data as to how much, you should not buy a hybrid at this time. Give it 10 years and see if there is a decent amount of data by then. At this point there is a potential problem and insufficent data to define if it is real or imagined.
Or if you have any ferrous metal pins, closures, plates, or anything of such in your body.
Uncle T makes an excellent point.
If you feel uncomfortable buying a hybrid for any reason whatsoever, you should look at other more conventional vehicles. We all have our own opinions on it, but hey, it’s YOUR money and you should feel comfortable with your purchase.
Have a beautiful weekend.
I agree that there is a lot to be worried about if you own a 2010 Prius. A drunk driver could hit you head on and the seat belts and airbags might not be enough to save you. You might go too fast for the road and the tires might skid and make you crash. A deer might jump in front of it. You might drive in high water and get swept away. Somebody talking on a cell phone might rear end you. You might hit black ice and skid off the road. You could be a victim of road rage. Thugs might even shoot you to carjack the car.
Oh yes, and way way way way down the list, you might get a tumor and blame it on the car.
I agree that there is no formal evidence yet that such things cause any bodily harm. But, if it’s a worry, it’s a good a reason as any not to buy, as worrying may be just as detrimental to your health. No one’s getting out of here alive, and no one has yet said that living like a complete hermit will extend your life either.
Point I was trying to make is that a lot of people worry about the wrong things, like the people who won’t fly on a commercial airline yet think nothing of weaving through 80 mph traffic on a crowded freeway.
ABC had a good news show on this: “Are We Scaring Ourselves To Death?” Folks worry lots about the wrong things. See some of it here:
The electrical system is located a long way from you and you are shielded by thick steel. Cellular phones are encased in plastic, yet there is no conclusive proof that holding one to your head is dangerous. And Prius uses a lower voltage system (202 volts) since they lost the law suit for patent infringement with the 274 volt battery system. I wouldn’t worry about it.
I hear you “jt” but; According to my girl, “Kim Commando”…8 of the major industrialized nations are coordinating a study to more conclusively decide how hazardous cell phone use is. Some studies abroad have shown a 40% increase in brain tumors on the side of brain of frequent cell phone users. Conspicuously absent from the study is the US. Agent Orange, asbestos, tobacco etc. producers in the US have long withheld their own findings on safety of their products and the cell phone industry could be no different.
After thousands died at the hands of each they were forced by the public and class action suits to reveal these facts after govt. agencies had failed to act. In the name of our “free” enterprise system, corporations are “free” to produce unsafe products and now “more free” to buy protection from the legislators of their choosing to continue selling products that kill.
“Kim”, who makes a living in technology thinks they’re unsafe. That’s enough for me to be more careful. We may be “scaring ourselves to death” needlessly about some products, but we developed that attitude with just cause.
Who performed the studies, and are they unimpeachable sources? There are lots of researchers who will discover whatever they are paid to find out, as your mention of tobacco illustrates.
There is not enough EMF in a hybrid car to make a compass needle swing…Our entire planet is one big magnet. Our Sun is a thermonuclear furnace that we are exposed to everyday. At some point we all die. Some of us die sooner than others. The only way your car will kill you is if you wreck it or are the innocent victim of a wreck…EMF??? Get a life…
NO ONE has said there was conclusive evidence; you’re shooting the messenger.
Just to be a little more clear…the “40%” studies obviously weren’t “unimpeachable” enough for a valid conclusion. That’s why the 8 countries are coordinating a joint study. That’s the point. Would you have people just disregard all studies that might be purposely done or instead, consider them but get their own more reliable results ? That seems the responsible thing to do.
For example; just because I disagree with Fox news, doesn’t mean I’ll dismiss everything they say. I might consider there opinion but suspend belief. Can you see the difference ?
In this case, the US sees fit not to participate, and maybe for good reason.
At this stage I’m considering her statement, acting more prudently, but looking forward to results I can trust; and are you ? Or, have you seen such proving cell phones are not a problem to your satisfaction ? Or, assuming plastic is enough of a barrier ?
I like this summary article.
We’re talking about cell phones here…you’re not reading the correctly addressed mail.
“Or, assuming plastic is enough of a barrier ?”
Most plastic is not a barrier at all. It conducts almost no electricity. But electric fields are everywhere. How could it be proven in people that cellular phones cause tumors? People are difficult subjects because you can’t get them to do what you want for any length of time without enslaving them. In this case, it would mean controlling their activities for years.