Despite Past Deadly Telecom Equipment Related Fires; Officials Didn’t Require Mandated Safety Measures for 5G Permit Applications

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by B.N. Frank, Activist Post:

A growing number of Americans – including lawmakers and celebrities – have been trying to stop cell towers and antennas of all sizes, 5G and 4G, from being installed throughout their communities (see 123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627).  In doing so, some Americans have convinced their local councils to pass protective wireless ordinances as well.  Sometimes that may not be enough though, like in Malibu, CA where officials now have some explaining to do.

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From Children’s Health Defense, The Defender:


Malibu City Officials Accused of ‘Disturbing’ Deceit Over 5G Fire Safety Measures

Malibu residents accused upper-level city staff of failing to enforce a city council mandate requiring T-Mobile, Verizon and AT&T to include safety-related engineering documents in their 5G infrastructure permit applications. The city has a history of devastating fires traced to malfunctioning telecom equipment.

By Suzanne Burdick, Ph.D.

Residents of Malibu, California, are accusing upper-level city staff of deceit, claiming that for months the staff members hid the fact that they failed to enforce a city council mandate requiring T-Mobile, Verizon and AT&T to include eight safety-related engineering documents in their 5G infrastructure permit applications.

Malibu’s city council in 2021 mandated the eight documents be reviewed, sealed and signed by a professional engineer to ensure the project’s design did not pose a significant fire risk, as the city has a long history of devastating fires involving telecom equipment.

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In 2018, telecom equipment sparked the Woolsey Fire in Malibu that burned for over a month, destroying over 400 homes and resulting in $6 billion in damages.

“Three people died trying to escape the fire,” Susan Foster, a fire and utility consultant who co-founded the nonprofit California Fires & Firefighters, told The Defender. “Families had to flee into the ocean with their children on their shoulders.”

Malibu residents like Malibu For Safe Tech Executive Director Lonnie Gordon said she found it “shocking” that city department heads and the city attorney refused to ensure that T-Mobile, Verizon and AT&T submitted the required documents in their applications for 19 new 5G small cell projects.

Gordon and other residents were repeatedly told they couldn’t see the companies’ safety designs because the documents were “confidential.”

Gordon told The Defender:

“After months of stonewalling us, they finally sent us 1.5 gigs of info, which is thousands of pages of information … The time and effort it took our attorney, [W.] Scott McCollough, and the electrical engineer to go through these materials was arduous.”

McCollough, chief litigator for Children Health Defense’s (CHD) electromagnetic radiation (EMR) cases, and engineer Erik S. Anderson discovered that confidentiality wasn’t the reason the city withheld the documents from public view.

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“The issue is not confidentiality of the documents,” McCollough wrote to city planning officials, “It is that there are, in fact, no such documents. City staff has not enforced the requirement for the key materials.”

In his letter written last week on behalf of city residents, McCollough said the “claim of confidentiality” was “just a ruse to conceal the fact that higher-level … City staff were inhibiting implementation” of the full application requirements.

“This deceit is disturbing,” he added.

In his letter, McCollough was careful not to accuse lower-level city staff of deceiving the public and failing to enforce the safety requirements. “At most they were carrying out instructions from their superiors,” he said.

According to his analysis, the blame mostly falls on Interim City Attorney Trevor Rusin, Planning Director Richard Mollica and Environmental Sustainability Director Yolanda Bundy.

‘Slap in the face to the city council members’

Malibu City staff have not said why they are not enforcing the requirements.

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