The mobile phone industry has reassured travelers by saying that cell phones do not interfere with airplanes or cause fires at gas stations. But the same industry said there were studies that found that cell phone radiation did not cause any harm, but recent research has shown that there is a link to increased cancer cases. Do they speak the truth now?
What are the concerns about airplanes and gas stations?
Basically, we can summarize the fear of electronic devices in the following two statements:
- Airplane passengers who can not turn off the phones put the flight in jeopardy;
- Frequencies emitted by cell phones or the battery can cause a gasoline fire.
What is proven about airplanes and cell phones?
So far, there is no evidence that cell phones can interfere with aircraft systems from inside the passenger cabin. And although ANAC prohibits the use of the aircraft on flights, with the exception of TAM flights that had recently been authorized use, the Brazilian aviation regulator has not yet proven such a ban on searches, and companies only have to adhere to the requirements.
Modern airplanes are designed to meet strict international safety standards, including the comprehensive protection of electronic systems and aircraft wiring. These protection requirements are specifically designed to avoid electromagnetic interference. In fact, aircraft routinely deal with large sources of electromagnetic energy, such as high-powered airport radar systems.
We can say then that it is a myth this history. But as is the rule, as long as the ANAC makes it valid, it is only up to you to follow.
What about cell phones and gas stations?
As far as concerns about the use of phones when car drivers are in petrol stations, the amount of radiofrequency energy emitted by modern portable cell phones is too low to cause a spark, which could ignite gasoline vapors.
Concern over the use of cell phones at gas stations was based on the belief that there was a risk that the battery could leave the device or move and cause a spark that could ignite the fuel, although, no one had any evidence to support this opinion.
In fact, the very static of a person’s body is more likely to cause gasoline fires. A report from an Australian agency even stated the following: “Although some fires were claimed to be caused by the explosion of cell phones, experts later revealed that none of the incidents was associated with telecommunications equipment. Instead, many of the fires were burned down by the static electricity discharge from the human body. ”
The MythBusters series has even made up a test and proved that really, cell phones burning gas stations was really an urban legend.
Such concerns seem even very excessive. But it is good to expect some more scientific research to have more reliable results. But while the legends do not fall, it remains for us to obey only the rules.