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French court orders 4G mast turn off after 40 cow deaths
France Created: 9 Jun 2022
A French farmer has won his battle to temporarily turn off a 4G antenna after he claimed it was damaging his cow herd’s health.

The administrative court in Clermont-Ferrand ordered the two month switch-off after Frédéric Salgues, a farmer in Haute-Loire, said he suspected that it was damaging his herd’s health.

The court stated: "It is appropriate to order the temporary cessation of the operation of this antenna for a period of two months, taking into account its general impact, with monitoring, by the judicial expert, of the behaviour of the herd, and of the dairy cows in particular, during this period."

Mobile network operator Orange now has three months to act in accordance with the ruling, including stopping the antenna’s operation but must ensure phone coverage continues for their customers in the area affected.

After the decision, Mr Salgues told the French Press that he hoped his cows would be able to 'recover as soon as possible' and called the case ruling 'a major relief and a victory'.

Mr Salgues said that since the antenna’s installation in July 2021 – 200 metres away from his farm in Mazeyrat-d'Allier (Haute-Loire) – around 40 of his normally-200-strong herd had died, and milk production had decreased by 15 to 20% within days of the antenna being switched on.

He claimed: “There are no medical elements that could [otherwise] explain this brutal drop in milk production.”

Philippe Molhérat, the mayor of Mazeyrat-d'Allier, who had previously authorised the antenna’s installation, testified in favour of the farmer.

He said that he feared 'a catastrophe on a human level' and that his 'concerns' were growing for the 1500 inhabitants of his village.

Yet lawyers for the mobile operators affected by the ruling, which as well as Orange also included Free and Bouygues Telecom, said that there was 'no scientific evidence' that there is a link between animal health problems and electromagnetic fields surrounding mobile phone antennas.
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Source: The Scottish Farmer, John Sleigh, 08 Jun 2022

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