Litigation on EMFs

thumbnail flag UKThere have been two main instances in the UK when litigation has taken place concerning power-frequency EMFs.

Judicial Review

The first was in 1994 when National Grid sought to install a new underground cable in east London, between Tottenham and Redbridge. Three families living along the route sought a Judicial Review of the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry. They claimed that a responsible Secretary of State would have refused permission to National Grid, on the basis of possible health effects. The case is usually referred to as “Duddridge et al” after one of the families.

The case was decided in the Secretary of State’s favour. The judge ruled that there was no basis in law or Government policy why the Secretary of State should have refused permission for the cable.

For more detail, see a newspaper case report

Personal Injury

In the 1990s, two families sued the electricity industry, claiming that EMFs had caused childhood leukaemia. The Studholme case was against Norweb, the local electricity company for the Studholme family and their son Simon, and the Loxton case was against National Grid, as the Loxton family, including their son Thomas, lived near to a National Grid transmission line.

Both cases were discontinued in 1997 by the plaintiffs.

French Farming court case

A court in France awarded damages to a farmer against the transmission company RTE, but this was overturned on appeal.  See full details.