Finding out more: Radio and TV interference

Broadcast radio and TV

On rare occasions, interference with higher frequency FM radio can occur near electricity installations. This is usually as a result of faulty equipment. Occasionally properties close to overhead line towers have overlaid television images. This is a result of “ghosting” when both the main TV signal and a reflected signal from the tower are received. In both instances this should be reported to the electricity company that owns the equipment (National Grid or the relevant Distribution Network Operator), and they will then be able to carry out an appropriate investigation and remedial works if they are required.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

At National Grid, we operate Wi-Fi in many of our substations.  We have also used Bluetooth to communicate with a monitoring device attached to a 400 kV conductor which was strongly in corona.  Both of these are more hostile environments in terms of production of RF interference than a normal overhead line, and we have not experienced any problems.

Other equipment

The EMFs from power lines can interefere with some types of equipment including cathode-ray tube TVs and computer monitors  - those issues are dealt with on this site.